“Her only base is corporate entities.”
Sinema previously called private prisons a ‘bad deal for Arizona’ and a ‘disaster’ on Twitter. She must have changed her mind, as she’s become one of their top recipients in recent cycles. Private prison company CoreCivic has maxed out donations to Kyrsten Sinema both this cycle and last year.
This past June CoreCivic maxed out with a contribution of $5,000 to Sinema; in 2022 they gave $8,000 to her campaign, making her the eighth-highest recipient of funds from the CoreCivic PAC that cycle.
These aren’t the first donations Sinema’s taken from the private prison industry: from 2019 to 2020, she raised $20,000 from Management and Training Corporation, a company that ran private prison facilities.
Sinema notably has a history of putting herself, donors, and lobbyists first and Arizonans last: a 37-page handbook for her Senate staff leaked last year detailed the amount of time she allots for constituent meetings (3 minutes) versus that for lobbyists (20 minutes), her weekly hour-long appointments with the Senate personal masseuse, and her unwillingness to work past 6:30 pm. The handbook also prompted an ethics complaint filed by 13 advocacy groups for her alleged abuse of staff, including requiring them to do her grocery shopping, make sure she is fed at all times, and fix her internet.
Arizona Republic: Sinema among top takers of private prison company CoreCivic’s political donations
Ryan Randazzo | August 30, 2023
U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, who left the Democratic Party last year to become an independent, is among the top recipients in recent years of political donations from private prison operator CoreCivic Inc., a departure from the norms of her former party.
[…]Sinema herself, when she was serving in the state Legislature as a Democrat, was critical of private prisons on social media in 2010 and 2011, once calling them a “disaster.”
In June, CoreCivic’s political action committee donated $5,000 to Sinema, according to Federal Election Commission records, hitting the maximum contribution of that kind allowed.
Only four other congressional candidates — all Republicans — have received that amount this year from the company, records show.
No other members of Congress from Arizona have received a donation from the CoreCivic PAC this year, according to FEC data.
[…]In the 2022 election cycle, when Sinema was not on the ballot, she received $8,000 from CoreCivic employees and the company PAC, according to OpenSecrets, which tracks money in politics.
[…] Sinema was the eighth-highest recipient of funds from the CoreCivic PAC and company workers that cycle, with the only higher donations going to three political parties/committees and four candidates. The top recipient of CoreCivic money that cycle was the Democratic Lieutenant Governors Association, which received $50,000 from the PAC, according to OpenSecrets. The top recipients between the association and Sinema were all Republicans or Republican groups.
[…]Immediately after Sinema changed her party affiliation last year, the state Democratic Party criticized her, saying “she answers to corporations and billionaires, not Arizonans.” The CoreCivic donations are likely to fuel that critique.
[…]Herstam said that while Sinema is an effective campaign fundraiser, he expects her to finish third in a three-way race if she runs for reelection because she’s not pulling enough support from independent voters, who also generally dislike candidates who get strong corporate support.
“Her only base is corporate entities and fundraising,” he said. “She will continue to raise a ton of money, but the hedge funds and the equity funds and the financial institutions and the pharmaceutical companies and the private prisons, they really don’t generate that many grassroots workers or base support.”