United States: Protesters followed and filmed a Democratic senator to the toilet
Stephen A. Cook
Kyrsten Sinema, a centrist Democratic senator with a crucial role in negotiations around Joe Biden’s investment program, was indignant on Monday at being followed by protesters into the toilet of the university where she teaches.
Political disagreement led to unexpected behavior. US Senator Kyrsten Sinema can attest to this. The elected centrist Democrat was followed and filmed, Monday, October 4, by demonstrators from the “Lucha” organization , into the toilets of Arizona State University, where she teaches. They criticize him for his position against the amount set ($ 3,500 billion) intended to reform the American social fabric and to fight against climate change in Joe Biden’s investment program.
“We want to talk to you , “ says a voice over, on a video uploaded by the organization. “I am leaving,” replied the senator calmly. Without adding a word, Kyrsten Sinema comes out of the bathroom in the rest of the footage as a protester stands nearby and says, “I need you to support the workers.”
“Yesterday’s behavior is not legitimate demonstrations,” denounced the senator on Monday, judging it “absolutely inappropriate” . After himself conceding that this senator was blocking the progress of her big plans , Joe Biden was also asked about the streak: “These are not suitable tactics, but it happens to everyone , “ he said. he reacted. For her part, White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki deemed “unacceptable” that Senator Kyrsten Sinema was followed
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, an Arizona Democrat, is clapping back after she was videotaped and chased into a school bathroom over the weekend by a group of pro-Biden agenda activists, confronting her over her objections holding up Democratic efforts on Capitol Hill.
President Joe Biden also weighed in on the encounter, when asked on Monday, calling it not appropriate but also “part of the process” for someone without Secret Service protection.
Sinema, in an earlier statement on Monday, called the display caught on video and posted online “no legitimate protest” and “wholly inappropriate.”
She claimed activists entered Arizona State University, where she was teaching, using “deceptive” and “unlawful” means.
“After deceptively entering a locked, secure building, these individuals filmed and publicly posted videos of my students without their permission — including footage taken of both my students and I using a restroom,” the statement said.
While she wrote she supports the First Amendment, she shunned the protest — by a group she doesn’t name but claims to have met with several times since she was elected to the Senate.
“Yesterday’s behavior was not legitimate protest. It is unacceptable for activist organizations to instruct their members to jeopardize themselves by engaging in unlawful activities such as gaining entry to closed university buildings, disrupting learning environments, and filming students in a restroom,” she wrote.
Video posted to Twitter on Sunday by the organization Living United for Change in Arizona or LUCHA, showed people chanting at and chasing the first-term senator into a bathroom, pressing her to support Biden’s Build Back Better agenda and progressive immigration policy.
LUCHA co-directors Tomas Robles and Alejandra Gomez said in a statement to ABC News that Sinema has shown “zero interest to engage with her constituents or meet her colleagues halfway on critical legislation.”
“Sinema’s constituents have not been granted access to her office, they have been ignored, dismissed, and antagonized,” they said in an email on behalf of the organization. “We will continue to do the appropriate thing: listen to people across Arizona about what they need to thrive, meet our community where they are, fiercely advocate on their behalf, and meet the moment!”
The confrontation comes as the moderate Democratic senator, along with Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., continue intraparty negotiations on the topline number for a larger social spending package to accompany the already Senate-passed $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill.
“In the 19 years I have been teaching at ASU, I have been committed to creating a safe and intellectually challenging environment for my students. Yesterday, that environment was breached. My students were unfairly and unlawfully victimized. This is wholly inappropriate,” Sinema continued.
Sinema’s statement ended by putting the onus also on elected officials to foster a healthy environment for politics.
“It is the duty of elected leaders to avoid fostering an environment in which honestly-held policy disagreements serve as the basis for vitriol — raising the temperature in political rhetoric and creating a permission structure for unacceptable behavior,” she wrote.