A conservative columnist on Monday called out Sen. Kyrsten Sinema over a report that the Arizona Independent who caucuses with Democrats has been living large on the taxpayers’ dime.
Matt Lewis in a column for The Daily Beast notes that Sinema isn’t the only lawmaker who takes advantage of the political perks that go along with holding public office, but he suggests that the revelations that the Arizona senator has spent thousands for luxury hotel stays “detracts from some of Sinema’s legislative achievements, not to mention her once-bright potential to be an independent-minded political star.”
“I’m no lefty who feels betrayed because Sinema left the Democratic Party to run as an independent. In fact, I have argued that Sinema is one of ‘America’s best and bravest politicians’ and that she’s ‘one of the most effective U.S. senators,” Lewis writes.
“But it’s hard to read the reports about her lavish lifestyle and not conclude that she’s just another politician who’s in it for the perks and privileges.”
Lewis notes that Sinema’s critics, especially those on the left, have accused the Arizona senator of being beholden to wealthy donors, and although he doesn’t share their views, he acknowledged that Sinema’s opposition to the carried interest tax loophole “gave me pause.”
“A less-cynical view is simply that Sinema is taking full advantage of an opportunity to live a robust life, while mixing work and pleasure in a shrewd way. True, it’s an opportunity that 99 percent of hard-working Americans can’t access—and it’s all thanks to her position as a senator,” Lewis writes.
“Even if you assume the best, this sort of behavior reinforces a growing sense among many Americans that the game is rigged and that politicians are using their perch to benefit themselves, not ‘we the people.’”