Earlier this week, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) laid into both Republican and Democrat leaders for failing to help the middle class for the last three decades, which includes — even though Warren left it unsaid — the Clinton era, the Associated Press reported.
“Pretty much the whole Republican Party — and if we’re going to be honest, too many Democrats — have talked about the evils of ‘big government’ and called for deregulation,” said Sen. Warren at an AFL-CIO-sponsored conference. She argued that their policies “turned loose ‘big banks and giant international corporations,’” and “juiced short-term profits even if it came at the expense of working families.”
“For more than 30 years, Washington has far too often advanced policies that hammer America’s middle class even harder,” said Sen. Warren, noting that the economy had improved, but those improvements weren’t benefiting the average American worker.
Another panelist at the conference, Jennifer Epps-Addison of Wisconsin Jobs Now, won favor from the crowd when she expressed concern over just handing Hillary Clinton the party’s nomination in 2016.
“I don’t want to get into trouble, but I’ll say it anyway,” Epps-Addison said. “It starts with this idea that we have a presumed front-runner for the Democratic nomination for president, because if we don’t accept that … if we say that we demand somebody to actually meet our needs before we’re going to give them a candidate for the presidency, then that can make a difference.”
While Clinton does hold a lead over other potential Democratic candidates, the progressive wing of the party isn’t too enthused. They question Clinton’s ties to Wall Street and Big Business, and wonder if she will be willing to move out of the Center to fix the country’s problems. Many are calling for Warren to run, hoping that her populist viewpoints will pull support from both Democrats and Republicans suffering in the current economy.
With her constant focus on repairing the middle class, Warren will shift the focus of the party and have an effect on the debates leading up to the 2016 election. And although Warren continually says that she is not running for president, maybe her influence within the party will lead to a candidate who will actually fight for legislation that benefits the 99 percent, rather than protecting the wealthiest one percent.