Elizabeth Warren's Latest Answer to Presidential Candidacy Question Marks a Shift From Her Regular Response
Welcome back to 2016 presidential election watch where, frankly, any candidate goes at this point. Although we've been focused on the selfies of Hillary Clinton for the last six months, let's switch over to Democratic presidential candidate-in-waiting Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). With Clinton still snubbing the will-she-or-won't-she riddle, everyone now wants to know: Will Elizabeth Warren run for president? It seems like Warren herself wants to know this, too.
The progressive senator sat down for an interview with People magazine for this week's issue, and the main topic of conversation was the 2016 presidential election, because apparently everyone forgot we have super-crucial midterm elections coming up in less than two weeks. This is what Warren had to say about her much-speculated presidential bid:
I don't think so. If there's any lesson I've learned in the last five years, it's don't be so sure about what lies ahead. There are amazing doors that could open. ... Right now. I'm focused on figuring out what else I can do from this spot [in the Senate].
She sounds pretty sure of her future goals, right? Not according to media pundits, who jumped on the "I don't know" declaration as fast as they did former President Bill Clinton's "Hill might run, I have no idea, hah." George Zornick wrote in The Nation that Warren's vagueness is a calculated tactic, leading us to believe that a campaign may already be brewing:
As a veteran Warren-watcher, I can say with certainty this is more ambiguous than she’s ever been on the subject. “I don’t think so,” “amazing doors that could open,” and “right now” are the traditional vernacular of a someone flirting with a campaign — and someone who wants you to know it.
It's true that Warren's "I don't know" is less definitive, more self-conscious than her previous statements on 2016. In December 2013, Warren said at a joint Boston press conference with Mayor-elect Martin Walsh, "I'm not running for president and I plan to serve out my [Senate] term." She repeated that refrain in April, twice during an interview with ABC News’ David Muir. Warren added then that she's also not "Hillary's nightmare," criticizing media pundits for their woman-on-woman, Democrat-on-Democrat headline sensations.
In August, Warren sent a strongly worded letter to the Federal Elections Commission, disavowing herself from the grassroots Ready For Warren super PAC, which launched over the summer. Although she refuses to associate with the campaign, the organizers continue to round up email petitions urging, "Run, Liz, run!" Will they get their wish? Probably not.
Warren's "I don't know" isn't as absolute as "I'm not running," but Warren lovers probably shouldn't read into it. A representative for Warren's office told The Nation that despite her little three-word comment, Warren's position on 2016 hasn't changed.
When it comes to 2016, it looks like we're back to square one.
Images: Getty Images (3)