Elizabeth Warren’s near-constant presence on the campaign trail is solidifying her status as one of the Democratic Party’s most influential figures — and a force to be reckoned with in the Senate. “That means other Democrats don’t just owe Warren. They also have to worry about the consequences of offending her.”
From The Hill
After staying on the sidelines in the primaries, the Massachusetts liberal has crisscrossed the country to campaign for presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and Democrats in crucial Senate races.
Having never held elected office before 2012, Warren’s ascent to party leader has come at breakneck speed. She is rapidly building a network of allies, giving her increased leverage as she seeks to pull the Democratic Party to the left on everything from Social Security to policing Wall Street.
“Warren is the politician that all Democrats want,” wrote Jaret Seiberg, an analyst at Cowen & Company. “That means other Democrats don’t just owe Warren. They also have to worry about the consequences of offending her.”
Warren rejected pleas from liberal groups to launch her own bid for the presidency during the primaries and didn’t pick sides in a surprisingly competitive race between Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who shares many of her policy positions.
But after the primaries were settled, Warren became unabashed in her support of Clinton, lending significant liberal credibility to a candidate that faces lingering doubts on the left.
Warren joined Clinton for a large rally Monday in New Hampshire, where she showed why she has become one of the party’s most effective critics of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump.
“He thinks that because he has a mouth of Tics Tacs that he can force himself on any woman in groping distance,” Warren said at the outdoor rally, with Clinton seated at her side.
“I’ve got news for you, Donald Trump. Women have had it with guys like you.”
Aside from being a foot soldier for Clinton, Warren has been a regular presence on the campaign trail, touting candidates up and down the Democratic ticket.
Her busy campaign schedule, which has included frequent stops in swing stages, shows that her populist message has currency across the country, not just in liberal enclaves.
Before stumping with Clinton in New Hampshire, Warren was in Missouri helping Jason Kander, the state’s secretary of state, in his bid to unseat Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.). And on Tuesday, Warren was in North Carolina, boosting Clinton’s candidacy as well as that of Deborah Ross, the former state lawmaker challenging Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.).
Clinton holds an edge in the battleground state of North Carolina, but Missouri remains a Republican stronghold.
Warren has also made campaign stops to help unseat Senate Republicans in Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Nevada.
“She more than anybody else is just about the most popular person among Democratic voters,” said one financial lobbyist who has tracked Warren closely. “She’s not bringing the party towards her. Elizabeth Warren is where the base of the party is.”
Warren is already a lower-ranking member of Senate Democratic leadership, having been brought into the fold after the party’s disastrous midterm elections in 2014.
But if Democrats retake the Senate and Clinton wins the White House, Warren is poised to take on an even more outsized role in Washington, a remarkable position for a lawmaker who is still technically a freshman.
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