OAN Geraldyn Berry
4:28 PM – Tuesday, May 9, 2023
Senator Dianne Feinstein has reportedly returned to Washington on Tuesday, casting her vote in the Senate, after a three-month-long absence.
Feinstein’s press secretary, Adam Russell, confirmed the news.
In an interview on Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) gave a statement regarding the veteran senator’s return.
“I’m glad that my friend Dianne is back in the Senate and ready to roll up her sleeves and get to work,” Schumer said. “After talking with her multiple times over the past few weeks, it’s clear she’s back where she wants to be and ready to deliver for California.”
This comes as the 89-year-old had been facing mounting pressure from fellow Democrats to get back to work soon or resign. House Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), have called on her to step down. They have cited the federal judiciary being harmed if she does not step down.
With the Democrats having a 51-49 majority in the Senate, her months long recovery and absence had delayed the party’s ability to get ahead, resulting in the inability to advance some of President Joe Biden’s judicial nominees without her presence.
Feinstein clapped back at her critics.
“There has been no slowdown,” Feinstein said.
The nomination of Julie Su as secretary of labor as well as several judicial appointments had been delayed due to Feinstein’s absence in the closely divided Senate.
In March, Feinstein was hospitalized for shingles, a painful viral rash. On March 7th, she said she was recovering at home and looked forward to returning to the Senate “as soon as possible.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) came to Feinstein’s defense in April following initial backlash for the 89-year-old’s absence.
“I don’t know what political agendas are at work that are going after Sen. Feinstein in that way,” Pelosi said. “I’ve never seen them go after a man who was sick in the Senate in that way.”
At the end of next year, Feinstein is set to retire.
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