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In case you were doubting whether Sen. Elizabeth Warren, of Massachusetts, was considering a 2020 Presidential run, doubt no longer. The Senator announced steps today to form an exploratory committee which is typically the first phase on the way to launching a full campaign. This move will allow Warren to begin raising money, hiring staff, and making several key campaign moves without the full burden of a campaign. The formation of the exploratory committee is chiefly concerned with helping a candidate determine their overall support before launching a full-fledged campaign.

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USAToday reports on the move by Warren:

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren announced the formation of an exploratory committee for a presidential run, making her the highest profile Democrat to formally move toward a bid for the White House in 2020.

“If we organize together, if we fight together, if we persist together, we can win. We can and we will,” Warren told supporters in a video posted online Monday morning.

Warren, a former law professor, has long been expected to join a large field of Democrats vying for the 2020 presidential nomination. Sen. Bernie Sanders, the runner-up in the 2016 Democratic primary; former Vice President Joe Biden and Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke are among the Democrats who may seek to challenge President Donald Trump.

“In our country, if you work hard and play by the rules, you ought to be able to take care of yourself and the people you love. That’s a fundamental promise of America, a promise that should be true for everyone,” Warren said at the opening of her video.

Here is the full accompanying video put out by Warren to serve as her announcement:

The video is a short biography of Warren’s political career and serves as a great summation of her campaign platform. The basic gist hearkens back to the John Edwards campaign of 2004, echoes of “two Americas” were playing in my head while watching it. Essentially, as Warren explains, the system has been rigged by Wall Street to help billionaires while burying the middle class.

One question that I think should be posed to Warren is why, in her opinion, didn’t President Obama succeed in addressing these issues during his two terms in office? His platform was similar to this in many ways, and most of it is assembled of the core Democratic Party beliefs from supporting unions, expanding health insurance, to attacking banks and Wall Street.

This messaging from Warren is much more on target and seems to abandon the baggage accumulated a short time ago related to DNA tests and proving her Native American heritage. Her original claim to fame came specifically as a progressive fighter to the left of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama on most issues. She should stick to that lane, embrace it, and try to prevent anyone else from taking it which is, I think, the intent of this early announcement. It’s a shot across the bow to Bernie Sanders, in some ways, as staking the territory of Democratic-Socialist and perhaps signaling that she can best carry the progressive mantle in 2020.

With this early announcement, coming even before the clock strikes midnight in 2018, is intended to give Warren the jump heading into the near year, as the New York Times reports:

Getting a jump on the competition, Ms. Warren plans to head to early voting states in the coming weeks, including Iowa, which holds its first-in-the-nation caucus in early February 2020. According to a person familiar with Ms. Warren’s thinking, the timing of her announcement had been decided weeks in advance.

Expect a barnstorming of Iowa and other early states to follow shortly. There is almost zero chance that Warren will not follow up launching a full presidential campaign in the coming months.

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Nate Ashworth is the Founder and Senior Editor of Election Central. He's been blogging elections and politics for almost a decade. He started covering the 2008 Presidential Election which turned into a full-time political blog in 2012 and 2016.

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