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Pelosi Hosting Fundraiser for Kyrsten Sinema Challenger

Pelosi Hosting Fundraiser for Kyrsten Sinema Challenger

Pelosi, Sinema, Gallego
Pelosi, Sinema, Gallego, via Shutterstock

Sinema, the first bisexual U.S. Senator, has renounced the Democratic party.

Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi will headline a fundraiser for U.S. Rep. Ruben Gallego, who is running for the Senate seat currently held by Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, according to NBC News.

Sinema, who left the Democratic Party and registered as an Independent late last year, has not announced whether she is running for re-election in 2024. Pelosi will appear virtually on Thursday night for Gallego.

Pelosi has been reluctant to become involved in Democratic primary races, so the appearance for Gallego is unusual on her part. She has, however, endorsed Rep. Adam Schiff, who is one of several Democrats running for the seat of retiring California Senator Dianne Feinstein.

Sinema was the first out bisexual elected to the U.S. House and later the Senate. Sinema has disappointed many liberals (and members of the LGBTQ+ community) by opposing much of President Joe Biden’s agenda and supporting the filibuster, the procedural rule under which it takes the votes of 60 senators to close debate on a bill and move to a vote on the bill itself. This has blocked several pieces of Biden’s priority legislation.

“I will be challenging Kyrsten Sinema for the United States Senate, and I need all of your support,” Gallego announced to a veterans' group in Guadlupe, Ariz., in January.

The Arizona Senate seat is among several others that will determine who controls the U.S. Senate after 2024. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee have not endorsed any candidate for the Arizona seat.

Gallego was first elected to the House in 2014. He represents Arizona’s Seventh Congressional District, which encompasses parts of Phoenix, Glendale, and Tolleson. He is an LGBTQ+ ally, with a string of perfect 100 scores on the Human Rights Campaign’s Congressional Scorecard.

If Sinema decides to run again, the race could become a three-way contest since the Republicans will likely put up a candidate. Democratic leaders worry such a race could harm their chances if votes are split between Gallego and Sinema.
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