Dianne Feinstein’s days are numbered, near as we can tell. She seems to have alienated all of her progressive pals. Maybe she should have thought of that before she decided to give Lindsey Graham a hug in front of everyone. New Yorker’s Jane Mayer issued a harsh report, where Feinstein’s mental capacities are definitely hinted toward.
Mayer does not seem to want to come right out and say that Feinstein is suffering from dementia. Instead, she dances around it and makes the “well informed Senate source” say it for her. The comparisons that are drawn are not flattering. Feinstein is painted as a doddering old grandma who does not know better.
Wait until you see the piece for yourself. There are a few passages that caught our attention, that is for sure. “But many others familiar with Feinstein’s situation describe her as seriously struggling and say it has been evident for several years. Speaking on background, and with respect for her accomplished career, they say her short-term memory has grown so poor that she often forgets she has been briefed on a topic, accusing her staff of failing to do so just after they have. They describe Feinstein as forgetting what she has said and getting upset when she can’t keep up,” they begin.
They may as well call her senile but as you can see, they stop short of that here. It’s not like they let her up off the mat, either. The piece is a total hit job. “One aide to another senator described what he called a “Kabuki” meeting in which Feinstein’s staff tried to steer her through a proposed piece of legislation that she protested was “just words” which “make no sense.” Feinstein’s staff has said that sometimes she seems herself, and other times unreachable.
“The staff is in such a bad position,” a former Senate aide who still has business in Congress said. “They have to defend her and make her seem normal.” So, why are they allowing this freak show to continue if things have gotten so bad? That’s where we get skeptical. They would have defended her to the ends of the earth before.
She gives Graham one hug and the claws come out. If you don’t believe us, just keep reading this “unbiased” bit of commentary. “Feinstein has always been known as a difficult taskmaster. She is said to have told someone applying for a job in her office, “I don’t get ulcers—I give them.” A stickler for detail, she demanded to see every page going out of her office with her name on it.
But with her diminishing capacity, this has become increasingly difficult. The former Senate staffer who still works with Congress declared, “It’s been a disaster.” As the ranking Democrat, Feinstein ordinarily would be expected to run the Party’s strategy on issues of major national importance, including judicial nominations. Instead, the committee has been hamstrung and disorganized.
“Other members were constantly trying to go around her because, as chair, she didn’t want to do anything, and she also didn’t want them doing anything,” the former Senate staffer said. A current aide to a different Democratic senator observed sadly, “She’s an incredibly effective human being, but there’s definitely been a deterioration in the last year. She’s in a very different mode now.”
Chuck Schumer is supposedly aware of the issue, for whatever that is worth. When the Senate Judiciary confirmation process for now-Justice Amy Coney Barrett, Schumer tried to embed his own spy. Feinstein’s leadership is said to have derailed these plans, though. On the other hand, Schumer may have a real problem on his hands soon enough.
He’s apparently working behind the scenes to get Feinstein to step down on her own. Overtures have even been made to her husband, in hopes that he would help out. Even if you assume that Mayer’s sources are telling the truth, Feinstein’s seat is safe until 2024. By then, the Democrats will have another decision to make. Do they remove her or convince her to resign? It’s a question that has to be answered sooner rather than later.