Eagan: Elizabeth Warren poses a tough choice for 2016
ON THE RISE: Although U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, above, finished behind Hillary Clinton in a new poll, she has a growing base of support that could propel her in 2016.
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Suppose it’s Hillary vs. Liz Warren for the Democratic nomination in 2016? What’s a card-carrying member of the sisterhood to do?
Lots of us seduced by the bright, shiny bauble named Barack Obama have buyer’s remorse: Hillary might’ve done a better job. Lots of us who felt vicariously humiliated by her stint as a doormat first lady did a 180 after her classy, oh-so-grown-up
rebound following her Obama defeat.
Hillary just walloped all comers in a new Quinnipiac poll, coming in first at 61 percent, ahead of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, whom John McCain now refers to, deliciously, as “whacko bird.”
Warren finished a distant 7 percent, third among Democrats behind Joe Biden. But if you think that means Warren has zero chance in 2016 — and zero interest in running — consider below.
Nationally, she was a virtual unknown just months ago. That was before she got on TV and trashed bank regulators for refusing to regulate big banks, a crusade with appeal both to young voters stalled in this shaky economy and older moderates who blame Wall Street for their shaky 401(k)s. Public Policy Polling just reported that Warren has quickly become the most popular politician among Massachusetts voters, beating both Obama and Deval Patrick.
Another Quinnipiac poll in early August measured passion toward a candidate. That poll had Warren finishing third behind only Christie and Hillary but ahead of Obama, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, Ted “whacko bird” Cruz and Biden.
Don’t feel the Warren passion? Well she had ’em hooting and hollering at the AFL-CIO in September and got good buzz this week from her “anarchy gang” slap at the Tea Party. Even without Wall Street, her populist agenda raised a passionate $42 million against Scott Brown. Now numerous reports say progressives are warming to her over Hillary because Hillary is too close to Wall Street, a source of much of her campaign cash.
Some say woman vs. woman angst is woefully dated in 2013. Juliette Kayyem, who out-raised Martha Coakley five to one last month in their race for governor, told me yesterday, “This notion of one woman at a time has simply run its course.”
But then Kayyem is 44. Coakley, Warren and Hillary are all 60-plus, old enough to remember when women lawyers were offered jobs as secretaries, not litigators. And 60-plus women have waited for an (elected) girl governor, or girl president, well, forever. Two good women? Let the hand-wringing begin.