We take no particular pride in calling for Senator Dianne Feinstein’s resignation. Though she’s never been progressive, she has chalked up some major legislative accomplishments and governed in a fairly noble, almost too bi-partisan spirit since taking office 30 years ago. We were among those who cheered when, in 1992, California elected two women, Feinstein and Barbara Boxer, to the Senate before California was really true Blue.
Nevertheless, for the sake of the nation, she needs to resign so that Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom can appoint a worthy replacement.
This isn’t about age. It certainly has nothing to do with gender. It’s about competence and having the mental acuity to serve California and our country. According to reporting done by Jonathan Chait, she is regularly lapsing. He recently reported that she is repeating questions already asked and answered in legislative hearings and forgetting she knows long-term colleague’s when they are standing right in front of her. She’s not up to the job anymore. Trust us, if 88-year-old Chuck Grassley (R-IA) was showing similar signs of being unable to fulfill his duties, we would be saying the same thing (Frankly, we just wish Grassley was gone altogether).
Other reporting by NBC News and others suggest that dozens of colleagues have privately begged her to resign. Progressive California Congressmember Ro Khanna has even publicly called for her to step down.
At greatest issue presently is the Senate’s inability to advance the appointment of Federal judges due to Feinstein being out of service due to an illness. Without her on the Senate Judiciary Committee, there is no governing majority of Democrats who can advance the judgeships for a full Senate vote.
It’s very “DiFi” of her and her enablers to scoff at public calls for her resignation and to cry sexism and ageism. We naturally deplore both. But the thing with Feinstein and her people is – they think they’re superior, and they always have. They’ve built a cult of personality around her and her “specialness.” Her staff has always behaved like there are senators and then there is Dianne Feinstein, the holiest and most wonderful.
How many times over the years have the Feinstein sycophants had us guessing whether the senator would return home to run for governor as if she was the only one who could save California? Then, they would wait for a few weeks enjoying all of that buzz before reminding us that she doesn’t think the job is done in Washington, and her “valuable seniority” is far more needed there. It was a tiring, nauseating cycle on constant repeat back in the days when she was more relevant.
Others who would like to be more sympathetic think we should just let her serve out her time. Are they kidding? January of 2025 is a political lifetime from now. There is important work that needs doing while the Democrats control the Senate, and she’s holding back the agenda.
Feinstein probably thinks we should be thanking her for calling on Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to replace her on the Judiciary Committee. Of course, she says it’s only “until she returns.” Why are you putting conditions on us? You aren’t up to the job! This step isn’t even practical, as it requires 60 Senate votes. Hey, Dianne, what Republicans do you see stepping up to help get liberal judges through the pipeline? What a shallow gesture.
The unethical disease of remaining in power just to keep all the trappings of the U.S. Senate around you has struck both Grassley and our senior senator. It’s also the height of arrogance to think an institution like the United States Senate can’t succeed without you in it.
It’s time for Californians and the California Democratic Party to stop apologizing for Dianne Feinstein. Speak up. Don’t remain quiet, thinking you’re being courteous, and certainly don’t remain disinterested. And please don’t mute yourselves because you don’t want to sound ageist or sexist. Again, this isn’t about those things. It’s time to stop keeping to ourselves what we inherently know: Dianne Feinstein has got to go.