Kyrsten Sinema Of Arizona

Democrats In Disarray; Progressives Vs. Moderates—What Is The Future Of “Social Infrastructure”?

It now seems clear that the progressive vs moderate battle in the Democratic Party is making the party look in disarray.

One must realize that with a 50-50 Senate and only a 6 vote margin in the House, this is not the time of Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal, or the time of Lyndon B. Johnson and the Great Society.

If Georgia’s two Senate seats had not been won in a runoff in January 2021, the opposition Republicans would be in charge, and nothing that the Democrats want would be occurring, or have the potential of occurring.

And as much as there is anger toward West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin and Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema, it would not work to attack them to the point where either might consider switching parties.

So the future of “Social Infrastructure” now seems essential to pare down from the proposed $3.5 trillion over 10 years to, more likely, a figure in the $2 trillion level.

This means some of the programs proposed will have to go by the wayside or be cut back in coverage or years, an unavoidable situation, highly regrettable, but reality must set in, sadly!

The Ultimate Week Of Reckoning For Joe Biden And The Democratic Party Future

President Joe Biden has been in office a week more than eight months, and he has had high public opinion ratings until the last month, with so many issues clashing, including the withdrawal from Afghanistan; the continuing COVID-19 Pandemic debate; and the problems at the Mexico border.

So right now, Biden is backed by only 43 percent in some polls, and the pressure is on to move ahead this week on the domestic policy agenda.

This will be seen as the ultimate week of reckoning for Joe Biden and the Democratic Party future, as debate begins on the Physical Infrastructure bill which passed the Senate with a bipartisan support of 69-30 on August 10, and the House of Representatives will vote on it this week.

The proposed “Social Infrastructure” bill, which would be the most expanded reform program since the Great Society of Lyndon B. Johnson and the New Deal of Franklin D. Roosevelt is more complicated. Progressive Democrats and moderate Democrats are fighting over the price tag of $3.5 trillion over ten years, and the issue also of gaining the support of Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Senator Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, who are resisting modifying the filibuster to accomplish the legislation.

The price tag might have to be lowered substantially, and the issue of the order of voting for the two pieces of legislation is also holding up progress, as moderates want the bipartisan bill passed now, and the more progressive “Social Infrastructure” bill to be passed later, while progressives in the party want passage of both at the same time.

Time To Make Clear That “Social Infrastructure” Bill Is Over TEN Years, NOT One Year, And Essential!

It is very disconcerting to see West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema, and some moderate Democrats in the House of Representatives, make clear their opposition to the proposed $3.5 trillion “Social Infrastructure” legislation, while supporting the $1 trillion “Physical Infrastructure” bill that has bipartisan support in the Senate.

The “Physical Infrastructure” bill covers roads, bridges, airports, rails, water systems, clean drinking water, cleaning the environment, and high speed internet access, and is urgently needed, gaining a 69-30 bipartisan vote in the Senate.

But the “Social Infrastructure” bill, over TEN years, NOT one, would cover many urgent matters, including:

Expansion of Child Tax Credits and establishment of paid family and medical leave
Expansion of Medicare to include dental, hearing, and vision benefits and possibly lower the Medicare age from 65 to 60
Funding for Elder Care and Disabled Care in their homes
Funding for Child Care so young children would have two years of publicly funded pre-Kindergarten Education
Funding for two years of Community College Education for students after high school
Funding for Climate Change legislation and promotion of electric vehicles
Provisions to lower the price of prescription drugs
Infrastructure investment for Native American communities
Increase in taxes on wealthy people and corporations, which in many cases pay ZERO taxes right now
Bolstering the Internal Revenue Service’s staff and enforcement resources to do its job of raising tax collection

If passed into law, it would be the biggest expansion of the social safety net since the Great Society of Lyndon B. Johnson in the 1960s!

The lie that is being spread is that the $3.5 trillion bill is all in one year, when it is actually over ten years, or $350 billion per year.

Meanwhile, the defense budget, bloated with lots of projects that are not needed but bolstering the profits of defense corporations which pay bribes to get their programs funded, is $700 billion per year, double the amount for the infrastructure bill.

This means that defense over the next ten years would be 7 TRILLION, double the social spending, but of course, defense is presented as one year at a time, while social reforms are portrayed as all at once, when it is totally false!

It is urgent that both pieces of legislation pass, and not be derailed by lies and deception. Government for all the people, not just the privileged, is long overdue!

The Fight For National Voting Rights Is Intense!

Texas Democrats are in Washington, DC as they work to prevent the state legislature from passing massive limitations on voting rights.

Many Republican states have done or are doing the same, promoting the return of “Jim Crow” laws, as if the Voting Rights Act of 1965 under Lyndon B. Johnson had not become law six decades ago!

But the disgraceful right wing Supreme Court has done great harm to that signature law, and has complicated the fight to restore and preserve national voting rights.

So the Democrats, with their razor thin majority MUST push to end the filibuster, at least for the basic right to vote, and Joe Biden gave a speech in that regard today in Philadelphia.

Pressure must be brought against Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona to do the right thing, as otherwise, what is the point of having a majority?

The Fear If One Democrat In The Senate Is Lost Through Health Issues, Republicans Control The Senate!

Joe Biden and the Democratic Party hold power in Congress by a “hair”, with an evenly split Senate, and only a few votes margin in the House of Representatives!

So if one Democratic Senator was to be incapacitated or pass away, the Senate would become Republican controlled for the rest of the 117th Congress!

With the Senate being generally older age than ever before, the danger of such a tragedy is multiplied.

So it is essential for Joe Biden to stop trying to deal with the Republicans, who are recalcitrant, and move ahead on his ambitious agenda.

And with Republicans being very unwilling to cooperate or compromise, hopefully Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona might be willing to agree to change the filibuster rule so that action on the Biden agenda can move forward!

The 116th Congress, 2019-2020, In Detail: Hopefully, The First Step To A Democratic Senate and Democratic President Elected In 2020

The 116th Congress, opening on January 3, 2019, will have exactly 100 new members, an all time high turnover.

It will contain 235 Democrats and 200 Republicans in the House of Representatives, a gain of 40 seats by the Democrats, the most massive turnover since the Midterm Elections of 1974, after Richard Nixon had resigned that August due to the Watergate Scandal.

The Senate will be 53 Republicans to 45 Democrats and 2 Independents (Angus King of Maine and Bernie Sanders of Vermont), an increase of two seats for the Republicans.

It is much more “Blue” or Democratic and younger and more diverse in every way, a true “Blue Wave”.

The average age of the newcomers is age 49.

63 of the new members are Democrats, and 37 are Republicans, with the Democrats having 60 new House members and 3 Senators, while the Republicans have 31 new House members and 6 Senators.

So there are 91 new House members and 9 new Senators, making a turnover of about 20 percent of the House and 9 percent of the Senate in membership.

40 of the new 100 members of Congress are women, 36 in the House and 4 in the Senate.

60 of the new members are men, 55 in the House and 5 in the Senate.

24 of the new House members are Hispanic, Native American and people of color, but all of the newly elected Senators are white.

History Makers include: Marsha Blackburn (R) of Tennessee, the first woman elected to Congress from her state; two Native American women elected to the House from Kansas and New Mexico; the Kansas Congresswoman being the first openly gay person elected to Congress from Kansas; first two Latina women elected to Congress from Texas; first Muslim women elected to Congress from Michigan and Minnesota; Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez from New York the youngest elected Congresswoman ever in Congress; the first black Congresswoman ever elected from Massachusetts and Connecticut; and Kyrsten Sinema the first woman elected to the Senate from Arizona, and also first openly bisexual member of the Senate.

We also have older new members in their 70s, Mitt Romney in the Senate at 71, and Donna Shalala of Florida in the House at 77.

The new Congressional group is highly educated, with 70 percent having gone to graduate school; one third having law degrees; 12 having MBAs; seven members having at least two graduate degrees; and Kyrsten Sinema having four graduate degrees.

19 members have served in the military, including 6 in the Army, 11 in the Navy, and 2 in the Air Force.

4 of the newcomers are professional athletes in their past, including 2 NFL football players, 1 professional hockey player, and 1 mixed martial arts fighter.

Also, there are 3 doctors, one dentist, 1 nurse, and 5 educators in the group of 100 new members of Congress.

The average age of members of Congress remains about the same as it has been, 58.5 years.

The total number of women in Congress are 124, an all time high, including 100 in the House and 24 in the Senate.

Finally, 21 percent of the Congress is Hispanic, Native American, and people of color.

Hopefully, the “Blue Wave” of 2018 will lead to a Democratic Senate and Democratic President in the Presidential Election of 2020.

The States That Will Decide Senate Control—Moderate Democrats Bill Nelson Of Florida, Claire McCaskill Of Missouri, Heidi Heitkamp Of North Dakota

Three “Red” States, those who voted for Donald Trump, have moderate Democratic Senators, who face tough challenges to be reelected.

Those states are Florida and Bill Nelson, Missouri and Claire McCaskill, and North Dakota and Heidi Heitkamp.

Progressives are not necessarily happy with these Senators, as they tend to be far less liberal than most Democrats, but there is no way for the Democrats to succeed and be a majority, if they repudiate those who tend to be more centrist.

So the hope is that Nelson, McCaskill, and Heitkamp can keep their seats, as if they do not, there is no chance of Democrats being a majority in the US Senate, and the potential loss of some of the 49 present Democratic seats would be disheartening.

It is ironic that it seems likely that the Democrats will win Nevada with Jacky Rosen, and Arizona with Kyrsten Sinema, but if they lose any or all three of the presently held Democratic seats, they will end up in negative territory.

Of course, IF the Democrats could produce a “miracle” and win with Beto O’Rourke in Texas over Ted Cruz, and in Tennessee with Phil Bredesen over Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn, along with Nevada and Arizona, the loss of the moderate Democrats would be less significant, as long as at least one of those three seats was retained.

The Potential For More Women Senators And Governors After The 2018 Midterm Elections, Mostly Democrats

More women than ever before are running for public office on the state legislative level, for the US House of Representatives, and for the state governorships and the US Senate.

Particularly in the Democratic Party, women will have a much greater role after the midterm elections, no matter who might lose.

2018 is the greatest year of women candidates for public office, surpassing 1992 and 2012, and the difference is that this round is a midterm election, while the other two were years of presidential elections.

So 53 women are running for the Senate and 476 running for the House of Representatives, while in 2012, the numbers were 36 for the Senate and 298 for the House, and in 1992, the numbers were 11 for the Senate, and 106 for the House.

There are presently 23 women Senators, and the numbers, depending on results in the midterm, could increase to 26, or if a number of women Senators lost their seat next week, the number could be as low as 16.

The Democrats have 17 women in the Senate, with the Republicans having six at the present time. Jacky Rosen in Nevada and Kyrsten Sinema in Arizona, along with Republican Marsha Blackburn in Tennessee, could raise the number up to 26, assuming all women running for reelection were to keep their seats.

12 women are running for governor, and there are six women governors at present. Stacey Abrams in Georgia, who is African American; Laura Kelly in Kansas; Gretchen Whitmer in Michigan; Molly Kelly in New Hampshire; Janet Mills in Maine; Christine Hallquist in Vermont; and Michelle Lujan Grisham in New Mexico, all Democrats, seem to have strong possibilities of being elected, joining two other Democratic women governors, and four Republican women governors at present.

13 Democratic Women Senate Candidates, 11 Running For Reelection, And 2 New Candidates Competing in Arizona And Nevada In 2018 Midterms

In 2018, the US Senate has 23 women serving in the body, including 17 Democrats and 6 Republicans.

11 of the 17 Democratic women face reelection challenges in November.

These include the following:

Dianne Feinstein of California
Mazie Hirono of Hawaii
Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts
Debbie Stabenow of Michigan
Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota
Tina Smith of Minnesota
Claire McCaskill of Missouri
Kirsten Gillibrand of New York
Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota
Maria Cantwell of Washington State
Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin

Additionally, two women are running for election to the Senate:

Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona
Jacky Rosen of Nevada

Also, Jenny Wilson is the Democratic nominee in Utah, competing against former 2012 Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney for the seat of retiring Orrin Hatch, but seen as having no real chance to overcome the well known Romney, much admired in Mormon dominated Utah.

At this point, six weeks before the midterm elections, all of the seated Democratic women Senators seem likely to be reelected, with the most contentious challenges being Claire McCaskill in Missouri and Heidi Heitkamp in North Dakota.

The odds on the two women running for election in Arizona and Nevada also look good at this point.

So the odds are heavy that there will be 25 women in the Senate in 2019, with 19 being Democrats and 6 Republicans.

And in the cases of Wisconsin and Arizona, the Republican challengers are women, so already we can add Arizona as a state which will have its first woman Senator. Additionally, Nebraska’s Republican woman Senator, Deb Fischer, has a Democratic opponent who is female, so that assures that seat will continue to have a woman as well.