Dark money group with foreign backer targets Sinema with ads over filibuster support

Biden calls on moderates for help as Manchin, Sinema flex political muscle

Democrats are working to ditch the filibuster, but Sens. Manchin and Sinema might stand in Biden’s way. Fox News’ Chad Pergram with more.

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., is the target of new ads funded by a dark money group whose liberal projects are bankrolled by a billionaire foreign organization.

Just Democracy, a racial and social justice grassroots coalition, announced last week that they would be running a “six-figure ad campaign” against Sinema “for prioritizing the filibuster over voting rights for Black and Brown Arizonans.”

One of the ads claims Sinema has become “the problem” in Washington because of her support for the centuries-old senatorial procedure that has helped preserve the minority party’s voice in government.

“Senator Sinema, we voted for you because you promised to break the gridlock in Washington and help us get good paying jobs and affordable healthcare,” the ad says. “But since going to Congress, you’ve become the problem instead of getting things done.”

Swill billionaire Hansjorg Wyss bankrolls the Sixteen-Thirty Fund.
(Getty Images)

The ad, which is narrated by a Black pastor, claims Sinema defending the filibuster has resulted in more Washington “gridlock” and that nixing the filibuster “would put an end to the political games.”

“We get things done that have support across party lines,” the add continues.

According to OpenCorporates, Just Democracy is just one of dozens of trade names used by the far-left dark money group Sixteen-Thirty Fund, which has spent millions in election cycles.

The Sixteen-Thirty Fund is bankrolled by Swiss billionaire Hansjörg Wyss, who pumped $135 million into the dark money group between 2016 and 2020. Wyss said he is not an American citizen in 2014.

The Sixteen-Thirty Fund does not identify its donors and threw at least $1.3 million behind lobbyists pushing for the Democrats’ election overhaul bill, S.1.

The VoteVets Action Fund, the dark money advocacy arm of the liberal group VoteVets, targeted Sinema and Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., last month by launching ads in Arizona and West Virginia trying to get their constituents to pressure them to support S.1, the For the People Act.

Sinema has repeatedly been pressed by reporters about her position on the filibuster, but she has defended the filibuster, saying it “helps protect the country from wild swings between opposing policy poles.”

“Instability, partisanship and tribalism continue to infect our politics. The solution, however, is not to continue weakening our democracy’s guardrails,” Sinema continued in a Washington Post op-ed last month. “If we eliminate the Senate’s 60-vote threshold, we will lose much more than we gain.”

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., attacked Sinema last month over her support of the filibuster, claiming it was “defeatism” and that Democrats were supposed to “help people.”

Neither Just Democracy nor Sinema’s office responded to Fox News’ request for comment.

Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser contributed reporting.

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