Over the past several months, as the nation has ramped towards the clamor known as the presidential election season, there has been one name quietly being chanted from the back and far-left, slowly growing in volume and fervor. Elizabeth Warren is that name. When asked concerning a possible run for the presidency, though, Warren’s responses have either been a refusal to comment or at the best a very negative ‘maybe.’ In the first half of January, The Atlantic ran an article called “Run, Warren, Run”; within the article, due to her constant refusals on the topic of the presidency, the author calls such actions a “tremendous disservice to her principles and her party.” This article, when coupled with a recent Boston Globe article which essentially touted the same points of disparagement, shows such a strong call from the Democratic far-left that the party has been pulling its hair out over the divide between extremists and moderates.
What is the answer to why Warren might not run? Pragmatically, it’s the right decision for lasting change. A Warren presidency would give the party an amazing voice and show of force as strong, if not stronger, than the election of Obama, but as can be noted based on the Obama presidency, good has been done, but it’s much harder to do so from the ‘top,’ so to speak. Warren has been a slow but effective part of government, pushing towards goals of equality and accountability when it comes to many issues including finance, foreign policy, and the Internet. Her work in the Senate has been absolutely essential in the passing of bills that would otherwise have fallen in committee, and allowed some to even pass on the Senate floor.
But let’s step back for a minute, shall we? This is all assuming that, if Warren ran, she would win. In the Senate, her seat is relatively assured for life, as her constituency supports her by a massive margin, but a failed presidential bid could shake that foundation.
Another point to note is the very possible division in the party if Warren were to run, since it is very likely that she would need to go up against Hillary Clinton. One of the last things you want during a presidential race is the presence of two candidates who work on similar points, but still have defined differences in specific areas. A split in the party between two women with amazing work records in nearly all sectors, but with very different financial histories and voices towards Wall Street, would be a costly misstep when it all comes down to November.
So, I say this to the Democratic Party as a whole. You have two choices which revolve around Warren. The first choice is Warren can be made to run, but is given every single iota of force behind her to make a serious run that appeals to the far-left as well as the moderates. However, in doing so, Hillary would have to run a very small campaign and possibly settle for a joint-ticket as V.P. The second choice is that Warren is not made to run, and the normal hodge-podge known as presidential politics happens without her. Instead, Warren is left to slowly cause constant and better change for the country as a whole despite (bi)partisan politics.
Flash in the pan or a slow distinguished march? The choice is yours.
Cover photo by Pete Marovich/Bloomberg via Getty Images.