"I want to go to Washington to help get commonsense, practical solutions. Congress spends all its time fighting on TV and no time solving real people's problems. We can't sit by and wait while Washington gets worse. We need to take action right now. Even in the face of tough times and adversity, I've reached across that aisle and made common cause with people who think differently than me."
Sinema brings passion and knowledge to the causes she fights for -- and a unique ability to win. In 2011, Kyrsten was lauded by the Arizona Republic for her "remarkable" ability to "partner with Republicans in both the House and Senate" to pass legislation while remaining "a staunch defender of key Democratic priorities."
Sinema was the most successful Democrat in the 2011 Arizona legislature, which Republicans held by a supermajority, passing more bills than any other Democratic legislator. She focused on the needs of military families, and cracking down on human smuggling.
In 2005, when she learned that some mothers had been picked on for breastfeeding their children in public, Sinema worked with Amy, a Chandler mom who had been kicked out of a public pool for breast-feeding her baby under a blanket, and a dozen or so other moms who were fighting for the right to feed their infants. She worked with Republican Jonathan Paton to introduce the bill, and worked across the aisle to get the bill passed. Now moms in Arizona can feed their babies whenever they need to.
Last year, Sinema introduced a bill to help the spouses of military servicemembers stationed in Arizona receive reciprocity for their professional licenses. This way, military spouses who work as accountants, hairdressers or lawyers--or any line of work that requires a license--can become employed as soon as they arrive in Arizona. If Uncle Sam asks a member of the military to come to Arizona then making it as easy as possible for their spouse to keep his or her job is the right thing to do. The bill passed, and was recently used as a model to create this commonsense law all over the country.
In 2010, Sinema collaborated with some of the state senate's most conservative members on legislation that protected victims of domestic violence and held abusers accountable. They changed the law to make attempting to suffocate or strangle someone a felony. They also protected family pets from domestic torture, which is a form of domestic violence and often a precursor to violence against a family member. They also changed the law to give police officers and other law enforcement agencies more tools to prosecute domestic violence and human trafficking crimes. All of these bills had clear bi-partisan support, passing unanimously out of both chambers and were ultimately signed by the Governor.
Overcoming partisanship has been a hallmark of Sinema's work as a lawmaker and community leader; in 2009, she wrote a book called Unite and Conquer: How to Build Coalitions that Win and Last.