A professor at the University of California Berkeley suggested slapping Democratic Senator Kyrsten Sinema for not voting to get rid of the filibuster, then deleted his tweet hours later after it provoked outrage.
“Tonight, Republican senators lined up to shake Kyrsten Sinema’s hand,” Professor Robert Reich wrote Wednesday morning. “Democratic senators should have given her the backs of their hands.”
Reich was Labor Secretary in the Clinton administration. His tweet came after Sinema, a Senator from Arizona, joined with West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin and Senate Republicans to oppose an attempt to eliminate the filibuster.
He posted a follow-up tweet on Thursday claiming he did not mean to suggest violence, but rather was using an “idiom.”
“Last night I deleted a tweet because it was widely misinterpreted and distorted by conservative media,” he wrote.
As The College Fix notes, “Sinema has been the target of harassment for her political positions before, including at Arizona State University, where she teaches social work courses. A group of illegal immigrant students followed her into the bathroom to tell her to support President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better legislation and amnesty.”
Today, many Democratic Senators like Dick Durbin claim the filibuster is a “threat to democracy” and a vestige of Jim Crow. This is directly the opposite of what they claimed in the past, when the Senate had a Republican majority. Back then, Democratic Senators claimed the filibuster was a wise legacy of the Founding Fathers, a critical check-and-balance needed to prevent one-party rule, and that the filibuster was necessary to prevent parties and administrations from overreaching. As FactCheck.Org notes, back in 2018, Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin defended the filibuster, claiming getting rid of the filibuster “would be the end of the Senate as it was originally devised and created going back to our Founding Fathers.”
As a lawyer and Trump critic notes, during “the filibuster/nuclear option fight in 2006…the press was incredibly sympathetic to the Reid/Durbin/Schumer line that the filibuster was the crown jewel of our Republic, even as they applied it in a novel and unprecedented way.” Today, of course, Senators like Durbin and Schumer take just the opposite position, and hardly anyone in the press calls out this inconsistency.