A new poll has found that nearly two-thirds of Californians across the political spectrum believe it’s time for Sen. Dianne Feinstein to resign in light of her recent health problems and advancing age.
Only 29% of the state’s voters now support the 89-year-old Democrat remaining in office, an 8 percentage point drop from February, according to a UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies poll cosponsored by the LA Times.
Illness is the primary reason for the decline in public support. Feinstein suffered from a bout of shingles in March that included contracting encephalitis. Key Democratic leaders like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York have also called for her to step down.
“I know everyone has tried [to get her to resign],” said Susie Tompkins Buell, a longtime Feinstein supporter and a major Democratic donor who lives in San Francisco and Bolinas. “Dianne Feinstein is obviously not well physically and mentally.”
Yet despite the increasing evidence that both voters and colleagues think it’s time for her to step aside, Feinstein has said she remains steadfast in her desire to serve out her term, which ends in early January 2025.
“Politicians are programmed to fight for what they want, and I think Feinstein is on autopilot,” Buell said. “So sad for her legacy.”
Feinstein is the oldest member of the Senate and the longest-serving female senator. She had previously announced that she will retire when her term ends.
“Old politicians are addicted to power,” Buell said. “It’s so, so sad and tragic."
Julie Zigoris can be reached at [email protected]