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Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema talks 'filibuster', bipartisanship during speech at McConnell Center

Senator Mitch McConnell called her “the most effective first-term senator” he’s seen during his nearly 40 years in the Senate.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema has received praise from Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

Sinema was the featured guest speaker at the University of Louisville’s McConnell Center on Monday with the Kentucky senator calling her “the most effective first-term senator” he’s seen during his nearly 40 years in the Senate.

The two senators are on opposite sides of the aisle, from vastly different parts of the country, but both senators made a show to share how differences do not have to drive them apart.

During the speech, Sinema defended the legislative filibuster and supports keeping the 60-vote threshold in the Senate just like McConnell.

She explained that if they were to lower the votes, the Senate would become more like the House and subject it to more rapid shifts in elections.

Sinema has received much pushback from fellow Democrats because of stymieing the progress they hoped to make during President Biden’s first term.

Her ability to work across the aisle is what captured the attention of McConnell.

“If you’re looking at a football field, and you’ve got divided government, or a lot of big differences on big issues, look for the things within the 40-yard lines that you can agree on and try to do those,” McConnell said.

The Arizona senator also spoke about the polarization in Washington, saying it is the politicians’ job to work together and not dig into party lines.

“From my experience, everyday Americans don’t immediately retreat to their partisan corners in their day-to-day lives. In fact, most of us believe that those partisan labels needlessly divide us. Most Americans understand that we’re all working towards the same goal – to create progress, build more positive communities, work hard, and achieve the American dream,” Sinema said.

After closing her speech, Sinema was gifted with a special Cardinal pin and a UofL edition bottle of Old Forester bourbon.

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