Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema flew to Europe to attend a fundraiser amid Senate negotiations over President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better plan, The New York Times reports.
A spokesman for Sinema told the Times that the senator flew to Europe to attend a fundraiser for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, though he declined to give any other details.
A source told the outlet that the event was in Paris, though it’s “not clear whether her trip to Europe was at the urging of the party committee, according to the report.
Her office had reached out to set up meetings in Paris as well as London, according to the Times.
Gary Peters, the chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Committee, also headlined a fundraiser in London, where contribution levels were as high as $36,500.
Foreign nationals are barred from donating to political candidates but parties and candidates can raise funds from Americans living abroad.
Sinema spox defends:
A spokesman for Sinema told the Times that Sinema remained engaged in negotiations over Biden’s plan.
“So far this week, Senator Sinema has held several calls — including with President Biden, the White House team, Senator Schumer’s team, and other Senate and House colleagues — to continue discussions on the proposed budget reconciliation package,” spokesman John LaBombard said. “Those conversations are ongoing.”
Sinema keeps meeting donors:
Sinema has frustrated fellow Democrats with her opposition to Biden’s plan and Senate leaders like Budget Chairman Bernie Sanders have complained that she won’t say what she will support.
But Sinema has repeatedly found time to talk to donors amid the negotiations.
In September, Sinema held a fundraiser with five business lobbying groups that oppose Biden’s plan, inviting members to an “undisclosed location” for “45 minutes” costing between $1,000 and $5,800 to attend.
And earlier this month, Sinema left DC amid negotiations to head back to Arizona, where The Times reported she held attended a donor “retreat” at a high-end resort and spa in Phoenix.