Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
Feinstein, De León Spar on How Democrats Can Best Resist
gvw_ap_news
By Associated Press
Published 6 years ago on
October 18, 2018

Share

SAN FRANCISCO — California Sen. Kevin de León tied U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein to Washington dysfunction during a Wednesday event and pledged to “fight like hell” for immigrants and other Californians if elected to replace her, while Feinstein crafted herself as a problem solver and argued resistance is futile with Republicans dominating Washington.

“It’s like hitting your head against a concrete wall — you can march, you can filibuster, you can talk all night, it doesn’t change anything. What changes things are elections.” — U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein 
“It’s like hitting your head against a concrete wall — you can march, you can filibuster, you can talk all night, it doesn’t change anything,” she said. “What changes things are elections.”
The exchange represented the stylistic differences between the two Democrats. De Leon says Feinstein is too passive in today’s political climate, while Feinstein argues her experience and steady hand is a boon to California.
But de León failed to land a winning moment during the hourlong discussion full of mostly polite disagreements. The two took questions from moderator Mark Baldassare of the Public Policy Institute of California and engaged little with each other. De Leon hugged Feinstein after, seemingly to her surprise.
He’s struggled to gain a foothold against Feinstein, and California Democrats are far more focused on winning U.S. House seats than they are on a safe Senate seat. California’s primary system sends the two highest primary vote-getters to the general election regardless of party. She’s far ahead of him in name recognition, polling and campaign cash.
Feinstein later told reporters she sees herself “in the center of the political spectrum” and hoped Republicans who didn’t plan to vote in the election would change their minds.

Painting California as the Breeding Ground for Progressive Policies

But de León repeatedly painted California as the breeding ground for progressive policies, noting his own role in authoring a “sanctuary state” law that restricts cooperation between local law enforcement and federal immigration authorities and a law to move California toward 100 percent clean energy for electricity.

“Because of the lack of action in Washington, I’ve had to lead in California.” — California Sen. Kevin de León 
“Because of the lack of action in Washington, I’ve had to lead in California,” he said.
Feinstein largely ignored his criticisms and instead trumpeted her work passing an assault weapons ban, which has since expired, and presented herself as a realist about what’s achievable for Democrats. Several times she told him she agreed with his positions, attempting to stifle any room for contrast.
Perhaps his harshest criticism came on immigration. De León, the son of a Guatemalan woman who came to the United States illegally, noted that Feinstein voted for homeland security legislation that reconstituted federal migration agencies and created Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the federal department that detains immigrants living in the country illegally.
Feinstein said comprehensive immigration reform is one of her top priorities. She’s introduced legislation to release parents and children together if they are caught at the border.
On health care, de León supports a “Medicare for all” plan that would extend the government health plan to all Americans. Feinstein favors a public option but does not support an entirely government-run health care program.

Feinstein Has Not Appeared Onstage With an Opponent Since 2000 Election

At 85, Feinstein is the oldest U.S. senator, but her age did not come up during the debate. De León, 51, did say it’s time for a “new way of thinking” in Washington.

“I’ve had a number of women come to me with allegations of sexual impropriety and when they’ve asked me to keep it confidential I have.” — U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein
Feinstein has not appeared onstage with an opponent since the 2000 election; deLeon sought a more robust debate but agreed to the more tepid moderated conversation.
He treaded carefully around Feinstein’s role in the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. He criticized her in September for failing to share allegations by California professor Christine Blasey Ford that Kavanaugh had sexually assaulted her in high school. Ford sent Feinstein a letter detailing the allegations but asked her to keep it confidential.
Feinstein defended her actions and reminded the crowd of her long role in the women’s movement.
“I’ve had a number of women come to me with allegations of sexual impropriety and when they’ve asked me to keep it confidential I have,” she said.
The two agreed that if Democrats take control of the U.S. Senate the allegations against Kavanaugh should be reopened.
Likewise, Feinstein didn’t criticize de León’s handling of sexual misconduct allegations in the California capital. He was a Senate leader when nearly 150 women signed an open letter last year calling out a pervasive culture of harassment. Another senator who had been his roommate resigned after an investigation found he likely behaved inappropriately toward multiple women. De León has defended the Legislature’s response.

DON'T MISS

Sonny Gray Allows 1 Hit in 7 Innings as Cardinals Sweep the Reeling Giants

DON'T MISS

Glasnow Fans 10, Ohtani Homers Against His Old Team as Dodgers Belt Angels

DON'T MISS

One Man Drowns in San Joaquin River, Another Is Hospitalized

DON'T MISS

How to Navigate the End of Your Pet’s Life

DON'T MISS

Trump’s Allies Say They’ll Enforce the Comstock Act. Believe Them.

DON'T MISS

Small Dog With a Big Personality: Lester ‘Les’ Schwab Needs a Forever Home

DON'T MISS

A DA Kept Black Women Off a Jury. California’s Supreme Court Says That Wasn’t Racial Bias

DON'T MISS

Seriously Strange: Real Hobbies You Didn’t Know About

DON'T MISS

The Museum Yoga Trend Where Fine Art Meets Downward Dog

DON'T MISS

Obesity Drug Used in Mounjaro and Zepbound May Help Treat Dangerous Sleep Apnea

UP NEXT

Coffee Research Center at UC Davis Poised to Deliver a Jolt

UP NEXT

Fresno Police Will Target Dangerous Drivers on Saturday

UP NEXT

Still Need Your Landline? California Just Stopped AT&T from Pulling the Plug

UP NEXT

California Workplace Safety Board Approves Heat Protections for Indoor Workers, Excluding Prisons

UP NEXT

Newly Named Washington Post Editor Decides Not to Take Job After Backlash, Will Stay in Britain

UP NEXT

FBI Raids Several California Homes, Including Oakland Mayor’s

UP NEXT

This Giant Freshwater Fish — North America’s Largest — Gains California Protection

UP NEXT

Donald Sutherland, Iconic Actor of ‘M.A.S.H.’ and ‘Hunger Games,’ Dies at 88

UP NEXT

California Voters Lose a Shot at Checking State and Local Tax Hikes at the Polls

UP NEXT

Biden Overtakes Trump in Fox News Poll Following Trump’s Conviction

How to Navigate the End of Your Pet’s Life

4 hours ago

Trump’s Allies Say They’ll Enforce the Comstock Act. Believe Them.

1 day ago

Small Dog With a Big Personality: Lester ‘Les’ Schwab Needs a Forever Home

2 days ago

A DA Kept Black Women Off a Jury. California’s Supreme Court Says That Wasn’t Racial Bias

2 days ago

Seriously Strange: Real Hobbies You Didn’t Know About

2 days ago

The Museum Yoga Trend Where Fine Art Meets Downward Dog

2 days ago

Obesity Drug Used in Mounjaro and Zepbound May Help Treat Dangerous Sleep Apnea

3 days ago

At Least 6 Heat-Related Deaths Reported in Metro Phoenix So Far This Year as High Hits 115 Degrees

3 days ago

Coffee Research Center at UC Davis Poised to Deliver a Jolt

3 days ago

Workers Sue Disney Claiming They Were Fraudulently Induced to Move to Florida from California

3 days ago

Sonny Gray Allows 1 Hit in 7 Innings as Cardinals Sweep the Reeling Giants

ST. LOUIS — Sonny Gray allowed one hit over seven innings and Alec Burleson drove in two runs as the St. Louis Cardinals completed a three-g...

10 mins ago

10 mins ago

Sonny Gray Allows 1 Hit in 7 Innings as Cardinals Sweep the Reeling Giants

15 mins ago

Glasnow Fans 10, Ohtani Homers Against His Old Team as Dodgers Belt Angels

24 mins ago

One Man Drowns in San Joaquin River, Another Is Hospitalized

4 hours ago

How to Navigate the End of Your Pet’s Life

1 day ago

Trump’s Allies Say They’ll Enforce the Comstock Act. Believe Them.

2 days ago

Small Dog With a Big Personality: Lester ‘Les’ Schwab Needs a Forever Home

2 days ago

A DA Kept Black Women Off a Jury. California’s Supreme Court Says That Wasn’t Racial Bias

2 days ago

Seriously Strange: Real Hobbies You Didn’t Know About

MENU

CONNECT WITH US

Search

Send this to a friend