[Marxism] Why an Elizabeth Warren Run for the Senate is a Terrible Idea

Dan DiMaggio dan.dimaggio at gmail.com
Wed Jul 20 15:19:31 MDT 2011

Good, detailed piece here from Naked Capitalism:


The end:

The key message to Warren is that Obama and the Democratic party are
decidedly not on her side, and she has deluded herself if she now believes
otherwise. To wed her star to theirs is not an enhancement but a diminution.
We’ve written in past posts why a Senate bid would not advance her aims. In
the pay to play system, she’d not raise enough money (due to a certain
dearth of heavyweight corporate contributions) to get on any interesting
committees. And most important, she’d still have to back a party and a
President whose vision is in large measure at odds with hers.

March Wheeler confirms our

What the people hailing a possible Warren run are arguing, effectively, is
that the consolation prize for the banks having beat her on CFPB should be
junior membership in a body that–as Dick Durbin has told us–the banks own.

Even putting aside the power of the banking lobby in the Senate, under what
model would Senator Warren be effective championing progressive values, or
even just “protect[ing] the agency she’s built”? Even assuming the Democrats
kept the same number of seats they currently have on the Senate Banking
Committee, even assuming Democratic leadership has already promised her the
seat that Herb Kohl’s retirement will open up, that will still make her one
of just three progressives (the other two being Jeff Merkley and Sherrod
Brown) on a committee that has long been actively working against her CFPB
candidacy. Even assuming Democrats keep the Senate, how amenable is Chairman
Tim Johnson–a bank-owned hack–going to be to Warren’s ideas? If Richard
Shelby were Chair, it’d be even worse.

And what about Warren’s effectiveness in the Senate as a whole–that body,
under Democratic leadership, where good ideas go to die? Name a progressive
Senator who has been able to do much to champion progressive ideas there?
Sanders? Franken? Whitehouse? Sherrod Brown? I love all those guys, and like
Sanders and especially Franken, Warren would presumably be able to leverage
her public support to push some ideas through. But are any of them more
effective at championing progressive values than Warren was before her White
House gig, when she regularly appeared on the media and excoriated the banks
in terms that made sense to real people?

Yet naive progressive groups continue to back failed causes. The Progressive
Campaign Change Committee had proudly announced that it is pushing a Warren
Senate bid and has raised
which is probably enough to buy 5 minutes of TV time. Why don’t they spend
their firepower on viable ideas rather than ones that serve the craven
interests of the Administration, which is to render Warren irrelevant?

We Yankees have a saying: “Fool me once, shame on thee. Fool me twice, shame
on me.” Warren is too good to continue to be this Administration’s pawn.
It’s high time she wakes up and smells the coffee.

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