Progressive Rep. Jamaal Bowman (DN.Y.) did not appear impressed by Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s announcement Friday morning that she is leaving the Democratic Party and registering as an independent.
“Goodbye Felicia”, BowmanOn twitter. “This is not about the party, this is about your pharmaceutical donors! Stop lying!”
In a video accompanying the tweet, Bowman laughed as he repeated the phrase “Bye bye Felicia,” and an automated voice read out a note that read: “You were never a Democrat anyway.”
Sinema announced the decision to change her party affiliation early Friday morning, saying she had “joined the growing number of Arizonans who reject party politics.”
“Removing me from the partisan structure is not only true to who I am and how I operate, I also believe it will provide a place of belonging for many people across the state and country who are also tired of partisanship. Sinema told CNN about his decision.
The Arizona senator, along with Sen. Joe Manchin (DW.Va.), was frequently a thorn in the side of Democrats over the past two years, holding up multiple legislative efforts in the tight 50-50 Senate.
In particular, Sinema and Manchin stood in the way of Democrats’ voter protection efforts.
Sinema has also been blamed by other Democrats for limiting prescription drug pricing reforms that became the final version of a law passed earlier this year.
Bowman’s comment about “pharmaceutical donors” appears to refer to those frustrations with Sinema, who has received more than $700,000 from the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries over her career.
Sinema’s announcement comes just days after Senate Democrats won a 51-49 majority with Sen. Raphael Warnock’s victory in the Georgia runoff election. However, it remains to be seen if he will join fellow independent Sens. Bernie Sanders (Vt.) and Angus King (Maine) in the caucus with the Democrats.