The Arizona Democratic congressman who is reportedly considering a 2024 primary challenge of Sen. Kyrsten Sinema pressed her on Saturday to hold a town all meeting explaining why she values the filibuster more than abortion rights.
“Ultimately, Congress is going to have to act to codify Roe into federal law,” President Joe Biden said on Friday. “The filibuster should not stand in the way of us being able to do that, but right now we don’t have the votes in the Senate to change the filibuster. That means we need two more votes."
Biden was referring to Sinema and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV).
Rep. Ruben Gallego, who served in Iraq as a Marine, suggested Sinema hold a town Hall to explain her position.
"Hi @SenatorSinema why don’t you have a town hall in Arizona and explain your choice to protect an old Senate Rule instead of a woman’s right to an abortion?" Gallego asked on Twitter.
"You haven’t had a town hall in awhile, I will co-host one of it helps," he added.
The filibuster is likely to be the biggest issue in the campaign if Gallego primaries Sinema. She hasn't just angered abortion rights activists with her support of minority rule, but has also angered voting rights activists and gun safety legislation advocates.
In January, Arizona Republic political columnist Laurie Roberts sized up what a Gallego-Sinema primary might look like under the headline, "Sen. Kyrsten Sinema has a headache and it has a name: Rep. Ruben Gallego."
"Liberals are furious with her refusal to vote to suspend the filibuster so the voting rights bill she supports could pass on a party-line vote. In the past, their fury hasn’t mattered. It was either Sinema’s way or the Republican highway. Democrats didn’t have a viable Plan B. Until now, perhaps," she explained. "Gallego could beat Sinema in a primary. Probably, at this point, Krusty the Clown could beat Sinema in Democratic primary. Gallego has a great story and he's a rising star on the left."
Gallego's challenge came after Sinema killed a plan to codify abortion rights and then fundraised on protecting women's health care.
This was just one of many times Gallego has taken to Twitter to push for filibuster reform:
\u201c.\u2066@kyrstensinema\u2069 https://t.co/lOp9bBUp6f\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1656596580
\u201cBreak the filibuster and codify Roe. Women will be arrested soon for doing what\u2019s best for themselves. They have lost their autonomy and have become second class citizens. We are weaker as a country. \nBreak the glass, it\u2019s time. @SenSchumer @Sen_JoeManchin @kyrstensinema\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1656090162
\u201cThis isn\u2019t normal. It is ok to be angry. It is ok to demand action. We are Americans we don\u2019t have to live this way. Your parents didn\u2019t live this way\nDemand Republicans pass real sensible guns law, demand Democratic Senators break the filibuster and save lives.\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1653566734
\u201cPlease just stop.. unless you are willing to break the filibuster to actually pass sensible gun control measures you might as well just say \u201cthoughts and prayers\u201d\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1653436075
\u201cTime to pass this \u2b07\ufe0f\u2b07\ufe0f and no filibuster by any Senator should stop it.\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1651550709
\u201cJohn Lewis Voting Rights Act would stop this but you know filibuster\u2026\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1646105728
\u201cThe same people that came up with this idea \u2b07\ufe0f are trying to change laws to make it harder to vote, to invalidate votes. We have Democratic Senators -Sinema, Manchin that care more about arcane Senate rules than protecting your vote. \ud83e\udd26\ud83c\udffd\u200d\u2642\ufe0f\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1642788115
\u201cI wouldn\u2019t filibuster any voting rights bill on any day. Let alone the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. Also @MondaireJones and I authored a portion of it.\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1642017432
\u201cLet\u2019s get rid of the filibuster when it comes to the debt limit. We have the votes, stop letting the Republicans in the Senate weaponize process.\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1633363464
\u201cOnly reason we have to negotiate this is because of the existence of the filibuster. We will never get true, effective police reform till we have filibuster reform.\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1632331338
\u201cIf we have to chose between the filibuster and preserving Roe vs Wade, it will be an easy choice. The filibuster must go.\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1630540842
\u201cThis is the best argument for us to get rid of the filibuster. 40 Senators can doom the economy.\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1628178021
\u201cThe filibuster is being used by Republican Senators to stop HR4 and SR 1. It is time to end the filibuster and pass necessary voting reforms. #endthefilibusternow\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1627331673
\u201cNo need for an insurrection. The courts, the state legislatures and the filibuster will undermine Democracy more. We need to pass the Voting Rights Act now!\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1625149033
\u201c#endthefilibuster Republicans will always have leverage if the filibuster stays.\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1623980438
\u201cFYI With #scotus now being an arm of the GOP it is important that when Democrats take back the Senate we get rid of the filibuster. We have to pass electoral reforms and not let an arcane Senate rule stop us.\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1561645758
\u201cMaybe we first have to get filibuster reform first, before any common sense gun reform. This is why the country is frustrated.\u201d— Ruben Gallego (@Ruben Gallego) 1466464127
He's also pushed on cable news:
\u201c- Gallego doesn't rule out '24 primary against Sinema\n- Calls her position on filibuster naive \n- Says she hasn't had townhall in 3 years\n- Says she's "really disappointing" voters\n- Says she has "looser principles" with Wall Street\n- "The only consistency ... is inconsistency"\u201d— Manu Raju (@Manu Raju) 1642187922
\u201c"I am [disappointed in Sinema]... I think she is not meeting the moment right now...I have faith that she will turn the corner but as of now there have been a lot of disappointing moments."\n\nI asked Congressman Ruben Gallego if he'd primary Kyrsten Sinema:\nhttps://t.co/oPHpxyGDg2\u201d— Mehdi Hasan (@Mehdi Hasan) 1637032773