January 27 Washington Post by Phillip Bump
The pre-election tension within the Democratic Party between the "Bernie Sanders left" and the "Hillary Clinton not-so-left" has not vanished.
But in the wake of President Trump's surprising victory and transition to the White House, the innate outsider-establishment friction that Democrats had in the primaries has been shifted onto a new plane: Obstructionism vs. incrementalism.
Instead of bickering over how liberal Clinton's potential Cabinet picks were (though there was some of that), the question is now the extent to which Democratic members of Congress should throw roadblocks in Trump's way.
And the form that it has taken most immediately is questioning whether Democratic members of the Senate should approve his Cabinet picks.
For example: Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), likely the best known liberal in the Democratic caucus, found it necessary to write a lengthy post on Facebook explaining why she advanced the nomination of Ben Carson out of committee. "Yes, I adamantly disagree with many of the outrageous things that Dr. Carson said during his presidential campaign. Yes, he is not the nominee I wanted," she wrote. "But 'the nominee I wanted' is not the test."
Or consider Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.). She is one of three Democratic senators to vote "nay" on three of the four nominees who have come before the full Senate — earning her early 2020 speculation. (The other two? Sens. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, both of New Mexico.)
Sen. Dianne Feinstein also represents a deep-blue state — California — but her record is quite different. Four votes, four ayes. (This has prompted no small amount of organizing in the Golden State.) She's joined by the leader of the caucus, Gillibrand's fellow New Yorker Chuck Schumer.
Below is the current tally of which Democratic (and independent) senators have backed Trump's Cabinet picks.
As more votes are cast, the pattern should become more clear: Which Democratic senators fall on which side of the new debate.- James Mattis, Defense John Kelly, Homeland Security Mike Pompeo, CIA director Nikki Haley, UN ambassador
Baldwin (Wis.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Bennet (Colo.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Blumenthal (Conn.) Yea: 2. Nay: 1. Abstain: 1.
Booker (N.J.) Yea: 2. Nay: 2.
Brown (Ohio) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Cantwell (Wash.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Cardin (Md.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Carper (Del.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Casey (Pa.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Coons (Del.) Yea: 2. Nay: 2.
Cortez Masto (Nev.) Yea: 2. Nay: 2.
Donnelly (Ind.) Yea: 4.
Duckworth (Ill.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Durbin (Ill.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Feinstein (Calif.) Yea: 4.
Franken (Minn.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
GIllibrand (N.Y.) Yea: 1. Nay: 3.
Harris (Calif.) Yea: 2. Nay: 2.
Hassan (N.H.) Yea: 4.
Heinrich (N.M.) Yea: 1. Nay: 3.
Heitkamp (N.D.) Yea: 4.
Hirono (Hawaii) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Kaine (Va.) Yea: 4.
King (Maine) Yea: 4.
Klobuchar (Minn.) Yea: 4.
Leahy (Vt.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Manchin (W.Va.) Yea: 4.
Markey (Mass.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
McCaskill (Mo.) Yea: 4.
(N.J.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Merkley (Ore.) Yea: 2. Nay: 2.
Murphy (Conn.) Yea: 3. Abstain: 1.
Murray (Wash.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Nelson (Fla.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Peters (Mich.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Reed (R.I.) Yea: 4.
Sanders (Vt.) Yea: 2. Nay: 2.
Schatz (Hawaii) Yea: 4.
Schumer (N.Y.) Yea: 4.
Shaheen (N.H.) Yea: 4.
Stabenow (Mich.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Tester (Mont.) Yea: 3. Nay: 1.
Udall (N.M.) Yea: 1. Nay: 3.
Van Hollen (Md.) Yea: 2. Nay: 2.
Warner (Va.) Yea: 4.
Warren (Mass.) Yea: 2. Nay: 2.
Whitehouse (R.I.) Yea: 4.
Wyden (Ore.) Yea: 2. Nay: 2.
January 30, 2017