Representative Kyrsten Sinema, the Democratic Senate nominee in Arizona, invited a group of pagan witches to an anti-Iraq War rally in the early 2000s.
In a series of emails obtained by the Washington Examiner, Sinema invites the feminist-witch group Pagan Cluster to attend a combined celebration of International Women’s Day and Iraq War protest in March 2003.
Sinema, then a leftist political activist, encouraged the self-described witches to wear “colorful clothing and come ready to dance, twirl, and stay in touch with your inner creativity and with the Earth.”
In a separate email obtained by the Examiner, Sinema describes “singing and spiraling in the pagan’s circle only 5 rows back from the police line” during another anti-war demonstration that took place later that year.
According to their website, The Pagan Cluster utilizes “music, drums, ritual, myth, humor and magic” in advancing liberal political causes that “have roots in the Reclaiming Tradition of feminist Witchcraft.”
Sinema, who is locked in a tight race with Republican representative Martha McSally less than a month before the election, has been criticized in recent days for her public pronouncements during her time as an anti-war activist.
During one 2003 appearance on libertarian Ernest Hancock’s radio show, Sinema dismissed concerns about Americans traveling to the middle east to fight with the Taliban.
“As an individual, if I want to go fight in the Taliban army, I go over there and I’m fighting for the Taliban. I’m saying that’s a personal decision,” Hancock said during his show.
“Fine,” Sinema said, “I don’t care if you want to do that, go ahead.”
Sinema’s spokeswoman, Helen Hare, told CNN the 2003 comments were “clearly offhand and an effort to get back on the topic of why she opposed the war.”
“The implications here are misleading, ridiculous, and yet another example of the lies and distortions that the McSally campaign and her Washington allies are using to try to hide McSally’s record of voting to hurt Arizonans on the issues they actually care about, like protections for pre-existing conditions,” Hare said in a statement to CNN.