Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) last weekend refused to sign a statement condemning the harassment of Sen. Kirsten Cinemas (D-Ariz.) until it agreed to a proposed $3.5 trillion social spending bill. Don’t include language pressuring him to change stance. , Axios reported late Wednesday.
Cory Booker (D-NJ) communications director Jeff Giertz, in response to Sunday’s incident in which pro-immigration activists disrupted a lecture , the cinema was giving at Arizona State University, then followed her into the bathroom before harassing her through the door of a stall to support the law at large.
The incident was videotaped and posted on social media, causing widespread controversy.
The third paragraph of the draft statement read: “What happened in that video was a violation of the privacy of Senator Cinema which has no place in our public discourse, and we strongly condemn it.”
In a Tuesday email exchange obtained by Axios, Sanders’ communications director Mike Kaska suggested that Giertz begin the paragraph with the words: “While we hope Senator Cinema will change its position on doctor’s drug reform and lead to a major reconciliation.” Will support the bill” before pivoting to the language of condemnation.
Moments later, Giertz replied to Kaska: “Thanks for the reply. My boss [Booker] Can’t agree to that edit.”
On Wednesday morning, Casca informed Giertz via email that “Sanders will not be signing, so please omit ‘Senate Democratic Leadership Team’ from the title.”
Axios reported that the statement has yet to be published, although it has been signed by several top Senate Democrats, including Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Elizabeth Warren (D-N. d) are included. -Mass.), and Joe Manchin (DW.Va.) in addition to Booker.
Both Munchkin and Cinema have said they would not support a reconciliation bill – largely authored by Sanders – that costs $3.5 trillion, a stance that has drawn condemnation from progressive activists and members of Congress alike. .
The cinema said in a statement on Monday that it criticized the protesters who harassed it over the weekend, saying their action was “not a legitimate protest.”
“It is unacceptable for activist organizations to instruct their members to put themselves in danger by engaging in illegal activities, such as gaining entry into university buildings, disrupting the learning environment, and instructing students,” he said. filming in a restroom,” she later added: “My students were. unfairly and illegally victimized. It’s completely unfair.”
At the White House, President Biden was more cynical about the incident, telling reporters that “I don’t think they’re the appropriate tactic, but it happens to everyone.”
“They aren’t the only people the Secret Service stands with,” Biden said. “So that’s part of the process.”
Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters that infiltration by activists into Sinima’s classroom was “unfair and unacceptable”, but added that the administration “stands for the fundamental right of the people to protest, object, criticize” and in particular Sinima. refused to condemn. dragged into the bathroom.
When contacted by The Post late Wednesday, Kaska declined to comment. Giertz did not immediately respond to a request for comment.