Ariz. Dem lawmaker slammed for campaign donations from banks and debt collectors after siding with GOP on minimum wage

Ariz. Dem lawmaker slammed for campaign donations from banks and debt collectors after siding with GOP on minimum wage
Kyrsten Sinema speaking at a neighborhood canvas hosted by the Arizona Education Association at Provision Coffee Arcadia in Phoenix, Arizona in 2018, Gage Skidmore.
Why Kyrsten Sinema has become one of the most influential Democrats in the Senate: reporter
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Sen. Krysten Sinema (D-Ariz.) is facing backlash for the campaign donations she received from banks and political action committees (PACs) working on behalf of debt collectors. The money was reportedly donated after Sinema sided with Republicans opposing the $15/hour minimum wage proposed under President Joe Biden's American Rescue Plan.

According to the Federal Election Commission, Sinema received $4,000 in donations just three days after she voted against the minimum wage increase. District Sentinel reports:

Those who expressed their approval of Sinema included the political action committees of firms geared toward serving the rich: Wall Street investment bank Morgan Stanley gave Sinema $2,000 while Canadian corporate jet manufacturer Bombardier gave the lawmaker $1,000. The political action committees of two different trade associations representing debt collectors also each gave Sinema $1,000 on March 8. The publication also notes that none of the donors are located in Sinema's home state of Arizona. Stanley resides in New York. ACPAC, described as a "third-party collection agencies, law firms, asset buying companies, creditors and vendor affiliates" is located in Washington, D.C. The Commercial Law League has a location listed in Illinois.

Those three groups contributed approximately 20% of the donations Sinema received in the days following her opposing vote. The Arizona lawmaker also saw a substantial increase in donations from individual donors. Those donations totaled $26,653.58.

In wake of the latest reports, Sinema is facing deep criticism from Twitter users who are frustrated by her continued support of Republican-backed policies. In fact, she is now being categorized with Sen. Joe Manchin (R-Va.) who has also been accused of similar actions.

Amid intense scrutiny, Sinema's office released a statement. Although she voted against the minimum wage legislation, she admitted no one should be living in poverty with full-time employment. However, the Democratic lawmaker also suggested that she voted against the bill because she believes it should be "separate from the COVID-focused reconciliation bill."

"No person who works full time should live in poverty," Sinema said. "Senators in both parties have shown support for raising the federal minimum wage and the Senate should hold an open debate and amendment process on raising the minimum wage, separate from the COVID-focused reconciliation bill."

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