Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), without a mask, walks through the corridor before today's Facebook/Twitter CEO hearing. pic.twitter.com/lYTVMEa3Dw
— The Recount (@therecount) November 17, 2020
I realize this is minor compared to the horrifying display with Lindsey Graham, but she really, really needs to retire. It’s a pretty bitter pill to swallow that, if she were to get sick, her care would be so much better than the average 80-something year-old in pretty much any state in the USA. She should act as though she understands that.
I think Jerry Brown needs to stage an intervention. He’s probably the only person she’d listen to.
I’m sorry, but as a resident of San Francisco, I have to take issue with the pile-on vs. Dianne Feinstein. For a site that seems hyper-vigilant vs. racism, age-ism, misogyny, anti-Semitism, there seems to be a LOT of tolerance for beating up on a long-time public servant who has reliably supported liberal (ok she’s not a ‘progressive’) causes ever since assuming public office in the 70’s. C’mon people. She’d have happily retired as a San Francisco supervisor if she hadn’t had to step into the mayoralty after Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk were shot dead in their City Hall offices. Yeah, she’s old, she’s polite, and she had the nerve to walk down the hall without a mask on . Enough with the ‘performative’ pearl-clutching. We should be better – and more loyal to our own – than that.
Gin & Tonic
Eager to hear a host of commenters tell you you’re wrong for pointing out the geriatric leadership of the Democratic Party.
My problem with her has to do with her undermining Dem messaging at key moments, repeatedly, for years. She has always struck me as someone who practices “triangulation” and hasn’t recognized that it’s not the 1990s anymore and that’s not helpful.
It’s also possible to get someone way better on policy. She’s supported lots of bad intelligence and justice related policies, and continues to do so even this year when there’s no obvious constituency for it among CA voters.
I do think it’s time for her to retire and I hope Biden gives her some kind of an excuse to leave. Like a minor ambassadorship, a position on a commission, etc.
Agree on the first part – she’s not a bad senator for the most part – her voting record is pretty good. But she does a lot of high-profile moments where she undermines public messaging and so on and doesn’t seem to be aware that she’s doing it.
I don’t think this is triangulation, though. I think she’s just kind of clueless about how the Senate and policies have changed and she tries to be collegial. And it’s detrimental to her larger aims.
@MaryLou: I would never say she hasn’t served with distinction, but I would definitely say that she should retire. She has done great work for the public, but it’s time for the next generation to carry on the baton. The race is never over, but we have entered a new phase that she doesn’t seem prepared to run, so I think it’s time for her to act as Queenmaker, step down and help lift up a proper successor.
My two cents.
DiFi has always had a weakness for crass triangularization and fluffing her cred among whoever has power or can deliver some influence, long before the Clintonites adopted that strategy. At least Bill Clinton could use it for some good political and policy goals. For Feinstein, it was always more about her political gain. So, she’s always had that bad tendency, but she also worked for good policy.
Now, it is just unhinged and deranged. She has become extremely arrogant in how she deals with anyone but her buddies in the ruling class club.
@MaryLou: No, it’s time to take away the keys. She’s a below replacement value centrist that enables terrible people in interest of comity. As a department chair, I’ve had to deal with this sort of thing for years–faculty well past their “best by” date and completely unable to recognize it.
She’s an idiot and undercutting everything our medical people and incoming president are saying and doing. I’ve never been a fan and I’m so happy she’s not my senator because I have no patience for this shit. I know plenty of old people, many even older than her. They aren’t this stupid. She needs to get hit, hard, by a clue by four.
Okay, here’s a funny story: a friend w/ the same last name was in SanFran a number of years ago, and called for a reservation at a heavily booked restaurant . . . and had no trouble getting in. She eventually figured out why she got in.
@MaryLou: Feinstein has always been this way and people have had the same issues with her well before she became an octogenarian. Among other things she has done just over the last few months: congratulated herself on the Barrett hearings, and ignored public health advice that, thank you very much, has become not “guidance” but imperative . She doesn’t get a pass because she is a woman or old or stepped up more than 40 years ago in the wake of an unspeakable tragedy.
The Moar You Know
@MaryLou: Former resident of SF here. Gentrified out, as so many of us have been.
I agree with your points but will still suggest, gently, that it’s time for her to step aside. The world has changed a lot, not just in the last year, and she is not keeping up. Doesn’t matter why, but she is not keeping up. It’s changed and it’s time for her to hand it off and retire.
I would agree that tone taken towards her here often on this site is not acceptable.
Eh. The elites are starting to realize they’re under scrutiny as well. Witness Gavin trying to get out from under that dinner party.
Problem is we reserve our anger for Dems because we expect Republicans to be assholes, but really this is just a function of ‘hey, we grabbed the brass ring, we’ve earned the right to not wear a mask’, and we’re all out here screaming ‘that’s not how this fucking works!’
Yes, be critical and angry, but DiFi is not individually the problem. This is more in line with what Chris Hayes wrote about – our leaders are failing us. CEOs, financial institutions, churches, elected officials – we’ve travelled way too far down the path that they shouldn’t be held accountable, and they’ve internalized that message – even the ones that should know better like Gavin.
@MaryLou: This site is only hyper-vigilant vis-a-vis ageism in the sense that it’s hyper-ageist.
Now there’s video of a prominent Democrat walking around without a mask on every attempt to demand compliance with wearing a mask is going to be met with this video.
For fucks sake, Republicans got the talking point the Green New Deal is abolishing hamburgers, and airplanes from a poorly thought out tweet by AOC’s former chief-of-staff, who she had to fire because of it.
It doesn’t take much for conservatives to stick their fingers in their ears and demand they can’t hear you, because one time some Democrat did or said something.
We need conservatives to wear masks. It’s a matter of life and death for the country.
This is a shitty example being set regarding wearing a mask.
@The Moar You Know: I agree, but I wouldn’t isolate it to her. The world has moved on for most of Congress, and most of them haven’t kept up. The average age of Americans is 37, the Senate it’s 61. Those numbers should be a lot closer together.
If she wants to preserve what is left of a good legacy, she needs to retire. Ughhh.
I tried to help her retire last time. Didn’t work.
Hopefully she doesn’t run again, and if she does, hopefully we get someone that I can vote against her again.
I’m sure she won’t run again in 2022, but I still retain a soft spot for her, even if she’s not fully in sync, politically, with 2020 California. It was extraordinarily inspiring in 1992 when California sent two Jewish women to the Senate (Feinstein won a special election when the odious Pete Wilson resigned to become Governor IIRC), and Barbara Boxer ran for Alan Cranston’s seat (a man with a heart of gold, who nevertheless physically resembled C. Montgomery Burns). So I’m looking forward to her retiring with dignity and with my well-wishes, and being replaced by someone much more progressive.
Senator Feinstein should wear a mask. But yesterday, the Senate voted down a quack Trump nominee for the Federal Reserve by 1 vote, including Kamala Harris (who got credit for it) and Diane Feinstein (who didn’t). Their votes count the same; they are both needed, right here, right now. A retirement today would be stupid. Utterly nonsensical. Maybe later. But not now. No, No, No, No, No!!
Yeah, it was instructive that the CA Democratic Party endorsed her Democratic challenger in the 2018 general (top two out of the jungle primary process). DiFi is past her sell-by date and despite her Senate seniority and committee assignments, is not doing as much for her constituency as I think is warranted.
For the record while I believe that age is more than a number, age-related loss of capacity is a legitimate concern and she would be an outlier at 87 to not be experiencing some amount. OTOH she has a lot more on the ball than the much-junior president.
She intends to serve out the six years, regardless of what we may think. As to running again in 2024, stay tuned.
If I worked with someone who brazenly walked around the office without a mask on I would report them to HR for disciplinary action.
I don’t give a flying fuck what her voting record or party affiliation is. We’re in the middle of a pandemic that is spiraling out of control, people.
@Martin: I think that the average disparity in wealth is a bigger mismatch than age, and maybe more important.
@patroclus: Thanks for info. I do agree with you that calls for resignation for episodes like this are silly.
The reason the vote was that close is two Republican Senators are isolating due to being in contact with COVID positive people, and therefore were not able to be on the floor to vote.
This should serve as an object lesson to Senators to wear a mask and get everyone they know to wear a mask.
The Moar You Know
Also, frankly, if not for her AIDS would still be raging out of control through the United States. That we are where we are with THAT hellbeast of a disease can largely be laid at her feet. She had to push the entire United States government, who did not care, into doing something about it. And did
Every citizen of this country who likes sex owes her big time, so the least you can do is not shove her onto the iceberg. Again: I agree that she’s not keeping up and that she absolutely should not run again, but that’s her call to make, and if not, the call of the voters of California.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
Ah, so now we are doing the traditional post election victory purity purge.
Proposed: That Senators and Representatives age 67 or older are required to use Medicare insurance, and may purchase whatever supplemental insurance is offered by carriers in their home state, but no other coverage. Discuss.
I’m sorry. Who are we talking about who should retire because of age? There are a lot of old ass people in Congress. We just had an election. Maybe we should delay the internal civil war until a little after the inauguration.
Feinstein has always been a crappy centrist and California deserves better. Having her combination of stupidity and weakness in charge of the Democrats in Judiciary is not only an embarrassment, but a serious handicap where one can’t be afforded.
@Enhanced Voting Techniques: I don’t think 1) asking someone to wear a mask and 2) expecting them to not congratulate Lindsay Graham for ramming a SC nominee through qualifies as a “purity test”. Those are really pretty basic things that any Democrat should be able to do.
@The Moar You Know: On balance, my view of Feinstein has always been positive. But walking around without a mask is clueless and stupid behavior that reeks of lèse-majesté. Masks are for the little people and how dare you criticize me for I am not a little person. It rankles.
Dianne Feinstein, Chuck Grassley, and Don Young are all 87 years old.
I suppose that a lot of crappy centrists must keep voting for her.
If nothing else, Feinstein’s office has always taken my calls, while I’ve never been able to get through to Kamala’s people in all my years of calling my senators.
Forgetting to wear her mask is not a good look on her, yeah, but could we maybe wait until Joe’s inauguration before we eat our own again?
ummmm… I think it was 47(against)-50for and they were under cloture 60 vote rules.
@Delk: so 29 years old each?
A related problem is that many decent, smart people who could run for office prefer a higher paid, more rewarding career instead of scrutiny, abuse, exhaustion and endless meetings.
@MaryLou: I can be plenty mad at her for not wearing a mask indoors. I’m plenty mad at any of them not wearing a mask indoors.
The Moar You Know
@matt: you Californian, by chance?
If you were you’d understand that “centrist” is right in the CA Dems wheelhouse.
Unless you live in Santa Cruz, but SC might as well be a foreign country. I say that with all respect, I lived there for seven years and adore it to this day. But it ain’t America. I think they should have their own passports.
I’m angrier about that stupid editorial by Michael Conway that argues that Biden should pardon Trump for federal crimes.
@catclub: ummm, no. 60 votes is not needed anymore on Presidential appointments. And Collins and Romney voted with us and Alexander also opposes Shelton but wasn’t there. Grassley and Scott presumably support Shelton but that gives us a 1-vote majority. And Kelly will replace McSally just after Thanksgiving. So she’s 1 vote short; which is either Feinstein’s or Harris’ (or any Democrat’s); depending upon who you wish to give credit for our win.
Gin & Tonic
@Martin: See, I made that precise point in the morning thread and got shat upon.
Her fellow Senator from Iowa who is about the same age just came down with covid. Almost everyone on the Republican side of the aisle refuses to wear a mask. You would think if for no other reason than her personal health she would ALWAYS wear a mask. Plus, Dems are trying to send a message and this undermines it big time. Speaking as a Californian she needs to retire and get out of the way.
All that brown hair dye has weakened her brain. She really needs to go.
@Martin: what dinner party? I obviously missed something.
@Martin: Wear the damn mask. This was one video, but she does it constantly according to reports. That is wrong.
I’m a little out of it, what is California going to do to replace Harris in the Senate?
@Martin: Does the average age include children? Or is that the average age of adults, say over the age of 18?
She should wear a mask. It is the number one issue for anyone in any leadership position to do everyday. Sherrod Brown was in a floor fight just the other day with maskless Republicans urging compliance. It is not hard.
She is 87 and only a 1/3 of the way into her current term. This disease is chewing up her constituents. She needs to be an example and be safe. Calling for retirement is a bit much. She has been a vocal scourge in hearings against Trump toadies and the impeachment. Her Graham coddling is also who she is.
@Scout211: Thanks for that. Stupid own goal. Plus, that’s a lame-ass apology:
May I suggest:
I didn’t follow my own rules, and if I don’t respect my own rules, and follow them, how can I expect anyone else to respect the rules when it’s not convenient. it won’t happen again.
Oh, and he shouldn’t have just stood up and walked out, he should have announced that the fucking party is in violation of the rules, and he should have either ended it or said that some of the people need to leave.
I am not impressed. In the favorable way.
I’ve seen some horrifying things the last couple months, but Diane Feinstein hugging Lindsay Graham was not one of them.
Gin & Tonic
@WaterGirl: Does our government represent everyone, or just voting-age adults?
Gin & Tonic
@Scout211: I’m more pissed off that he was able to get in, than that he didn’t wear a mask. I tried for a reservation every single time I traveled to the Bay Area and was never able to get one.
Whatever, I ended up loving Manresa and Saison, and they don’t play hard-to-get.
@Geminid: DiFi can hug anyone she wants, but it was mind-bogglingly stupid for her to praise Graham on the record for the quality of a judicial hearing that was a partisan screw job from start to finish. That absurd speech hurt the party’s credibility on a really important issue. So did her idiotic decision to parade around the Capitol without a mask.
Bard the Grim
@catclub: It was 47-50 because McTurtle voted against it when he saw it was going to fail, so that because of some stupid Senate procedural fuckery he can bring it up for another vote when/if he has enough ambulatory Repugs to vote for it. So really it was 48-49 and we got lucky that some GOP Senators were out sick.
As a former San Jose/San Leandro resident, California has shifted left from the time of Pete Wilson but Feinstein has not budged. California deserves better. I propose Katie Porter replace DiFi in the Senate and on the Judicial Committee.
Unlike DiFi, Porter is an actual lawyer, law professor and served as a clerk in the 8th circuit Court of appeals.
@JB: ” I’m a little out of it, what is California going to do to replace Harris in the Senate? ”
I think the CA Dem bench is pretty deep, and there are plenty of strong candidates in Congress and state legislature. Quite a few safe districts to choose from. I don’t think there is any clear front runner. I haven’t heard any clear favorite mentioned in the news.
@Delk: Grassley and Young both got Covid. Walking around that Covid swamp without a mask is just asking to for it.
@Gin & Tonic: Everyone, of course. But that’s not the point.
To include kids under 16 or 18 in that average skews things. Only the adults can be in government, so it makes sense to know the average and the median ages among adults.
Your mileage obviously varies.
One big problem here is the Dems’ insistence on choosing committee chairs or ranking members strictly by seniority. That leaves a lot of geriatric people who still vote the right way, but aren’t as sharp as they were 20 years ago, with committee gavels in the House (and maybe the Senate).
The Republicans have basically put term limits on how long you can be chair of a particular committee, and I don’t know if their system is perfect, but it seems to work better for them than strict seniority does for the Dems.
IOW, I don’t mind the Feinsteins of the world serving in Congress, but they should be just another member, rather than a Speaker, Majority/Minority leader/whip, or committee chair/ranking member.
I’m an old white dude from California. Not unhappy to see the pile on. I have voted for Feinstein’s opposition in every single primary and grudgingly voted for her in the General Election. I won’t go in to all the reasons I differ with her on policies but she has gotten more and more out of touch as she has aged
@Delk: Grassley’s got COVID. His appointment with the undertaker might not be far off.
@MaryLou: We’ve been hammering Senators like Rand Paul, Ron Johnson and Mike Lee for recklessly endangering their colleagues after testing positive for coronavirus and I don’t see why we should suddenly become circumspect in this case.
The Republican party has essentially become a pro-corona superspreader entity and the Senate floor is probably as risky an environment as the White House right now. Chuck Grassley was literally confirmed positive yesterday and none of us had a problem pointing out that the 87 year old Republican was at extremely high risk and should have known better.
It was bad enough to see her hug Lindsay Graham (both maskless) at the conclusion of Barrett’s confirmation hearings, especially given that Graham had been in close contact with multiple members of Trump’s team during the first WH outbreak and refused to get tested or quarantine himself. It’s not ageist to expect that the 87 year old Feinstein should demonstrate the good sense that even a Mitch McConnell can muster.
@cwmoss: I doubt we’ll be that lucky. The trouble is that COVID Kim will appoint someone worse to replace him. Yeah hard to imagine, but Steve King is available.
Hugging Lindsay Graham was dumb.
Not wearing a mask was also dumb.
I still voted for her in 2018, because her Democratic opponent in the General Election had a real blind spot at best when it came to women.
Fun fact: one of my low-info leftist friends was SO OUTRAGED at “Barbara Boxer” for hugging Lindsey Graham. ? He couldn’t name our senior Senator despite living here in California for decades. ?
Feinstein is the only legislator who has actually replied to any of my letters with an offer to help resolve the issue. Whatever else she does, she does try to help her constituents.
DiFi is at least 10 years past her sell-by date. Her performance in the Amy Covid Barrett confirmation hearings was nauseating and breathtakingly clueless. She’s a tone deaf, out of touch buffoon who needs to retire.
Longtime resident of SF here. If someone is too elderly or frail to breathe properly with a mask on, they shouldn’t be holding a high-level public office. If someone is too stupid or arrogant or careless to wear a mask in their public position, they should resign. Especially someone from SF, where in my experience, mask enforcement is taken very seriously. Never been a big DiFi fan, for various reasons.
One of those things that the rest of the world looks askance at the US for, though admittedly it is well down the list, is how old your government is. New Zealand, France and Finland are all led by people literally half the age – or less – of some of the US’s senators and Supreme Court judges.
If nothing else, maybe we’ll finally get an actual Democrat in that Senate seat. I am proud to say that as a lifelong Californian, I have never voted for Feinstein.
It would just be the chef’s kiss to the whole thing that if DiFi does come down with the Trump plague, it turns out that she got it from hugging Huckleberry Graham.
@MaryLou: Any Democrat — no matter how old they are but <i>especially</i> if they’re about to enter their tenth decade of existence — who persists in indulging in the useless theater of “politeness” and “civility” to monsters, needs to go. There is an urgent need for Democrats who actually understand what they’re up against, that there is no “going back” to normal.
@MaryLou: DiFi has an endless appetite for the surveillance state – and it’s past time for her to be replaced by a Democrat who won’t just go along with authoritarianism and ever-increasing defense budgets.
Yeah, DiFi not masking up is really pissing me off. After seeing Sherrod trying to get that Alaskan idiot to put one on, & then being insulted by dickweed Ted Cruz, I have no patience with fellow Dems undermining the mask message.