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ABC News says Kyrsten Sinema has 'taken a hard turn to the right' for resisting Dem spending spree

ABC News raised eyebrows for claiming that Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., has “taken a hard turn to the right” as she continues to resist the $3.5 trillion spending spree being pushed by her elections colleagues. 

FiveThirtyEight, a subset of ABC News’ political and election analysis, ran a piece on Monday titled “Kyrsten Sinema Is Confounding Her Own Party. But … Why?” which delved into the politics of the Capitol Hill drama preventing both the Democrats’ infrastructure and social entitlements bills from being advanced, focusing on Sinema and Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va.

“Manchin’s centrism is unsurprising: He has been a conservative Democrat his entire career, and his home state of West Virginia is so red that it might be politically impossible for him to move left, even if he wanted to. But neither is true of Sinema,” FiveThirtyEight senior elections analyst Nathaniel Rakich wrote. “Once a staunch progressive, Arizona’s senior senator has taken a hard turn to the right. On the surface, that appears to have been an effort to make her more electable by courting moderate and conservative voters. If so, she may have overcompensated: Arizona is no West Virginia, and no other swing-state senator has vexed Democratic leadership so thoroughly. In fact, Sinema’s established such a firm anti-progressive reputation that she may have lost the support of enough Democrats to endanger her reelection just the same.”


The article went on to demonstrate how Sinema voted with former President Trump “more often than expected” among Democratic senators, tying with Manchin at 50.4%. 

However, as pointed out by Brooklyn College professor KC Johnson, Sinema has voted with President Biden “100%” of the time and approved every single one of his nominees, according to FiveThirtyEight’s own tracker.

“Obviously voting records aren’t everything, but voting with Biden 100% of the time (per 538 tracker), including on all Biden nominees, is an unusual record for a straight-news story to describe as having taken a ‘hard turn to the right,’” Johnson reacted to ABC News’ tweet. 

Other critics were puzzled by ABC News’ characterization of the Arizona Democrat. 

“‘Hard turn to the right’ seems a bit of an exaggeration,” The Dispatch editor-in-chief Jonah Goldberg reacted.

“The media is suddenly deeply concerned about maverick senators from Arizona. I wonder what changed?” Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., asked. 


“What issues exactly is Sinema on the right on? It’s incredible how the mainstream press, which is generally further left than you average San Francisco voter, pretends that moderate Democrats are now right-wing,” conservative writer A.G. Hamilton tweeted.

“Water-carrying is not journalism,” conservative attorney Elliott Hamilton swiped at ABC News. 

“Journalism is dead,” “Ruthless” podcast co-host Comfortably Smug declared. 

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