A 89-year-old senator’s request for a “temporary replacement” on the Senate Judiciary Committee is causing chaos and controversy, sparking calls for her to retire for good.
The United States has a long and proud history of political service, with stalwart leaders such as Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Ronald Reagan. However, one senator who seems intent on clinging to power is Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). Her recent request for a “temporary replacement” on the Senate Judiciary Committee has been called “unprecedented” by experts, causing widespread fear among Republicans and Democrats alike. As an 89-year-old woman who has been out of commission for more than a month due to illness, it’s clear that Sen. Feinstein needs to retire and let younger and more capable leaders take the reins. Her refusal to do so is causing chaos and controversy across the political spectrum.
Sen. Feinstein’s prolonged absence has already had a significant impact, holding up the Senate Judiciary Committee’s approval of President Joe Biden’s judicial nominees. As judicial nominees must pass through the judiciary committee, the continued absence of Sen. Feinstein has effectively stalled the Senate’s judicial approval process, leaving both Republicans and Democrats frustrated and angry. This has led to calls for her resignation from both parties, with prominent Democrats such as Reps. Ro Khanna (D-CA) and Dean Phillips (D-MN) saying that she is unable to fulfill her duties.
Michael Thorning, the director for Structural Democracy at the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC), has said that replacing the absent senator on the committee will not be easy. Doing so would require 10 Senate Republicans to agree to end Senate floor debate and have a full vote on the Senate floor. While the Senate has traditionally handled these matters by unanimous consent, Sen. Feinstein’s request for a temporary replacement is likely unprecedented. Thorning added that “getting the necessary Republican support for [it] may not be a simple ask.” This means that the continued absence of Sen. Feinstein is causing not only chaos but also political gridlock in Washington.
Even more concerning is Sen. Feinstein’s age. At 89, she is one of the oldest members of the Senate, and her recent bout with shingles has cast doubts over her ability to continue serving. It’s clear that she is no longer up to the task of fulfilling her duties, and her continued presence in the Senate is a dereliction of duty that is harming American democracy. Sen. Feinstein should retire and allow a younger and more capable lawmaker to fill her shoes.
However Nancy Pelosi spoke out on this topic, and made a wild accusation that nobody has ever gone after a man for his health issues and demanded his resignation. Sigh.
On February 15, Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) entered a hospital for depression, becoming one of the most recent male senators to miss time due to illness.
In contrast to Feinstein, Fetterman has set a definitive return date of April 17, the day the Senate returns from a two-week recess.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who is 81 and closer to Feinstein’s age, was hospitalized in early March after falling. He confirmed on social media on Thursday that he would return to D.C. on Monday as well.
Both faced calls to resign due to health concerns.
In conclusion, it’s clear that Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s continued presence in the Senate is harming American democracy. Her absence from the Senate Judiciary Committee has caused chaos and gridlock, and her age and recent illness have cast doubts over her ability to continue serving. It’s time for Sen. Feinstein to retire and allow a younger and more capable lawmaker to take the reins. Her contributions to this country have been immeasurable, but the sad truth is that the time has come for her to step down. It’s time for new blood, new perspectives, and new leadership in the United States Senate.
Let’s continue this conversation, in the comments below.