Rep. Kyrsten Sinema talks border wall, healthcare with ABC15

Posted at 6:25 PM, Apr 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-25 00:15:53-04

Back to Washington this week, Rep. Kyrsten Sinema is pushing back against the border wall proposal.

"A wall is not an effective way to keep individuals out of the country," Sinema, D-9th District, said.

She says there's a better solution.

"I do support spending funds on smart things, like technology to support unmanned aircraft or small drones, night vision cameras, towers that allow us to have situational observational control," Sinema said.

On health care, the Phoenix Democrat tells us she's willing to work across the aisle.

"I have been open to any possibility of change as long as it achieves the goal, which is to make sure that Americans have access to affordable coverage," Sinema said.

Watch our extended interview with Sinema in the player above.

Sinema also explained why Arizonans need changes to the Affordable Care Act.

"There aren't enough healthy people in the exchange to make it worthwhile or profitable for the [insurance] company to continue operating," Sinema said. "That's why so many companies have stopped operating in the exchange in Arizona; that's why health costs have increased 116% in the exchange."

Sinema is also dealing with a campaign contribution controversy this month.

Media reports found several big donors with ties to Backpage's operators face pimping charges for prostitution ads on the site.

"None of the individuals who made these contributions had listed any affiliation with Backpage or the founders of Backpage," Sinema said.

Sinema says she's redirecting those donations, by making a contribution to the Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence. She also promises to better scrutinize her political donors.

"I asked my team... to change the vetting procedures, so that we are doing more due diligence in looking for folks whose names may not show up," Sinema said.