Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) has announced she has left the Democrats and is registering as an independent senator.
Sinema made the announcement Friday morning by publishing an op-ed in the Arizona Republic.
The senator blasted the increasingly partisan interests and radicalization of the Democratic Party as the reason for her departure.
She suggested that she had felt under pressure to “demonize people” as a member of the Democrats.
Sinema continued by explaining that such divisive tactics are causing lawmakers to become “distracted by political drama.”
In her op-ed, Sinema explains that she decided to become an independent as her moderate views don’t align with the major political parties.
“Americans are told that we have only two choices – Democrat or Republican – and that we must subscribe wholesale to policy views the parties hold, views that have been pulled further and further toward the extremes,” Sinema wrote.
“Most Arizonans believe this is a false choice, and when I ran for the U.S. House and the Senate, I promised Arizonans something different,” she continued.
“I pledged to be independent and work with anyone to achieve lasting results.
“I committed I would not demonize people I disagreed with, engage in name-calling, or get distracted by political drama.”
Sinema went on to accuse mainstream political parties in the U.S. of worrying more about blocking each other out than the well-being of their constituents.
“When politicians are more focused on denying the opposition party a victory than they are on improving Americans’ lives, the people who lose are everyday Americans.,” Sinema wrote in the op-ed.
“That’s why I have joined the growing numbers of Arizonans who reject party politics by declaring my independence from the broken partisan system in Washington,” she added.
“I registered as an Arizona independent. ”
Sinema has not stated whether she will caucus with Democrats.