Constituents and advocates like Ruiz have been forced to question Sinema in these settings because the Arizona senator “hasn’t had a public event or town hall in years,” Living United for Change in Arizona (LUCHA) said according to Arizona Republic. Sinema has “denied our requests, ignored our phone calls, and closed her office to her constituents,” LUCHA continued.
Wealthy donors have not had this experience: “Sinema leaves DC for high-end corporate fundraiser as she blocks Biden spending bill,” Mother Jones reported on Friday. “It’s the second time in a week Sinema will have fundraised with corporate interests who oppose Biden’s spending bill.”
When it comes to the everyday person—and one who is in pain—Sinema made it clear she just doesn’t give a shit. “I don’t want disturb you, but at the same time I just want see if I can get a commitment from you senator,” Ruiz said in the video. “This is my life, and the life of millions in the line. I just need to hear from you. Can we get a commitment from you, to get a pathway to citizenship … to protect me and millions like me. Can I get a commitment from you?” Silence.
“Alright senator, I see that you don’t want to respond to me,” Ruiz said. “Thank you for your time.”
When it comes to people who do get acknowledgment from Sinema, Mother Jones reported that “[o]n Tuesday, at an undisclosed location at Capitol Hill, she held a fundraiser with five business lobbying groups who agreed to write checks between $1,000 and $5,800 after spending 45 minutes with her.” Constituents and activists also attempted to confront Sinema outside her Arizona fundraiser over the weekend, but they were escorted out by police:
Ruiz was among the young immigrants and allies who last month held an overnight action outside the Capitol, where they called continued attention to the need for permanent relief in the budget reconciliation package. The 11-hour-long vigil continued even as it rained on their heads. “I traveled here all the way from Arizona with a clear message for my Senators Sinema and Kelly: we need you to do your job and deliver for the people of Arizona,” Ruiz said at the time.
“I joined this overnight sustained action to highlight the urgency of this moment,” she continued. “DACA recipients like me, and undocumented people like my mom, live each day with the fear of detention and deportation. Democrats have long said they want to make a difference in the lives of immigrants, and now is their moment to deliver.”
“With all eyes on Arizona and Senator Sinema right now, many Arizonans are asking, is Sinema doing her job?” LUCHA said in a statement. “The millions of Arizonans that include, Black, brown, and indigenous communities who elected her do not think she is. Sinema has shown zero interest to engage with her constituents, or meet her colleagues halfway on critical legislation … This is Sinema’s moment to do the right thing and stop blocking the Build Back Better Act.”