While 88-year-old Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein has represented the people of California for three decades, even some in her own party are suggesting that it is time for her to step down.
However, the Washington Examiner has reported that Feinstein just made clear that she won’t be removed.
Senator says she is “puzzled” by talk of cognitive problems
The Examiner cited a recent telephone call that Feinstein had with the San Francisco Chronicle’s editorial board in which the veteran lawmaker dismissed suggestions that she is no longer up to the job of serving.
“I meet regularly with leaders,” Feinstein was quoted as telling the editors. “I’m not isolated. I see people. My attendance is good. I put in the hours. We represent a huge state. And so I’m rather puzzled by all of this.”
Feinstein’s call came following an article published by the Chronical on Thursday in which both Senate colleagues and former staff members said the senator is experiencing cognitive declines.
One legislator spoke of having to be reintroduced to Feinstein several times over the course of several hours. Following each introduction, Feinstein is said to have discussed the same topics, apparently unaware that the issues had already been covered.
“I have worked with her for a long time and long enough to know what she was like just a few years ago: always in command, always in charge, on top of the details, basically couldn’t resist a conversation where she was driving some bill or some idea,” the senator said.
“All of that is gone. She was an intellectual and political force not that long ago, and that’s why my encounter with her was so jarring — because there was just no trace of that.”
Fellow Democrat says Feinstein’s mind is “bad and it’s getting worse”
Another of Feinstein’s fellow Democrats also said that her mental prowess has been dulled, complaining, “It’s bad, and it’s getting worse.”
The article noted that Feinstein previously issued a statement to the Chronical regarding her mental state late last month.
“The last year has been extremely painful and distracting for me, flying back and forth to visit my dying husband who passed just a few weeks ago,” she said.
“But there’s no question I’m still serving and delivering for the people of California, and I’ll put my record up against anyone’s.”