Sinema threatened by Arizona Democrats with 'no confidence' vote if she opposes $3.5T spending bill

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The Arizona Democratic Party turned up the pressure on moderate Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., warning that she could face a formal censure if she does not support President Biden’s key legislative priorities in the coming days.

In a resolution adopted last Saturday, officials noted they would "closely watch" Sinema’s votes on several issues, including the Senate’s upcoming vote on Biden’s $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation. The party said it would give Sinema a vote of "no confidence" if she "continues to delay, disrupt, or votes to gut the Reconciliation Package of its necessary funding."

The resolution also pressed Sinema to support efforts to reform the filibuster and pass federal voting rights legislation, among other Democrat-backed bills. If Sinema doesn’t meet the conditions, Arizona Democratic Party’s chair and executive board could censure her "with the clear understanding she could potentially lose the support of the ADP in 2024."

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Sinema was part of a bipartisan group of senators who led negotiations on the $1.2 trillion physical infrastructure bill that passed the Senate in August. But the Arizona senator and fellow moderate Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., have emerged as key roadblocks to the passage of the budget reconciliation bill, with both raising concerns about the spending plan’s cost. 

"I have told Senate leadership and President Biden that I support many of the goals in this proposal to continue creating jobs, growing American competitiveness, and expanding economic opportunities for Arizonans. I have also made clear that while I will support beginning this process, I do not support a bill that costs $3.5 trillion," Sinema said in July.

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With a razor-thin majority in the Senate, every Democrat will need to vote in favor of the bill for it to pass. The Senate is expected to vote on the budget reconciliation bill later this week.

"We all are facing a critical crossroads and nothing less than our Democracy is at stake, and as all indicators show Democrats could lose both the House and Senate in 2022 if we do not ‘deliver the goods,’" the Arizona Democratic Party resolution added.

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