Sinema's courage, Washington hypocrisy, and the politics of rage

Yet, according to the Liberal pundits, Sinema is no Mitt Romney. She had the audacity to stand on principle rather than politics. It is widely believed that other Democratic senators share her discomfort with changing the filibuster but, thus far, they have not summoned the same courage to face such withering criticism. As I wrote last year, such integrity is rarely rewarded by one’s own party: “Ross, like Romney, jumped — to the applause of opposing party. In the Senate, self-sacrifice remains an act best admired from a distance.”

Sinema’s speech was denounced by those who insist that bipartisanship is a “myth” in the age of rage. She is, according to MSNBC’s Nina Turner, a “soulless coward” for seeking common ground and compromise. She is hated precisely because she did not hate enough. She did not hate Republicans so blindly as to declare them modern Bull Connors like President Biden, or to call the filibuster “a relic of Jim Crow.”

In the age of rage, civility is repulsive and intolerable. Sinema made herself a reference point that exposed how unhinged many of her fellow Democrats have become. Remove that reference point, and only rage remains.