Amid a torrent of laments about how Elizabeth Warren was defeated by sexism (which was certainly a factor in her campaign’s collapse), here’s a candid, splash-of-cold-water-in-the-face assessment by reason.com’s Katie Herzog:
Excerpt #1: “Warren could have focused on the working class; instead, she focused on the wokest class. She advocated for social positions that may resonate with highly educated, largely white activists, but just don’t appeal to a broad base of Americans across race and class. She talked about nonbinary driver’s licenses and advocated for trans women to play women’s sports and used the term ‘traffic violence‘ when the rest of us simply say ‘car crash.’
“She’s out of touch — or at least, her advisers are — and there aren’t enough Oberlin grads for her to win Ohio, much less the swing states that will likely determine the outcome of the 2020 race. So here’s why I didn’t vote for Elizabeth Warren: Because she would have given us four more years of Trump. That isn’t sexism; it’s math.”
Excerpt #2: “Warren’s followers are both primed to see sexism everywhere and so enamored with their candidate — so sure of her (and their own) righteousness — that they are unable to see any of the flaws that are so apparent to anyone outside their bubble.”
Excerpt #3: “Some people seem to think it’s just obvious: If a man with Warren’s qualifications, intellect, and talent ran for office, he would have won. That may be true, although the results of the last election make me fear that qualifications, intellect, and talent don’t matter all that much in American politics.
“So here’s an alternate explanation: Elizabeth Warren didn’t lose this race simply because of sexism but because she made a series of political miscalculations, starting with the disastrous unveiling of her DNA test, which managed to anger progressives and make conservatives point and laugh. Then there was her refusal to go on the most popular cable news network in America in order to make a political point, the condescending manner in which she spoke about voters she disagreed with, her bungled Medicare for All plan, and the fact that she positioned herself to split the progressive vote with Bernie Sanders — a candidate with grassroots momentum and a campaign that has been ongoing since 2015.
“Had Warren pitched herself as a capable, qualified, less ancient and more moderate Democrat instead of Bernie Lite, it’s possible it would be her running against him right now instead of Joe Biden.
Excerpt #4: “But then she pivoted from the reformer who went after banks and stood up for the consumer into the sort of social media justice warrior who thinks she speaks for marginalized people while actually speaking over them. Despite this ill-advised rebranding, she still had plenty of ideas that I liked, from universal preschool to boosting small business to ending for-profit prisons and getting rid of the Electoral College. But her good ideas were too easily overshadowed by her bad ones.
“Take, for instance, the LGBTQ town hall (which was a bad idea in the first place). Warren was asked by a 9-year-old trans boy named Jacob what she, as president, would do to keep kids like him safe. Instead of telling him the truth (‘Jacob, bullying is sort of a local issue but I recommend a kickboxing class’), she said that she would let this 9-year-old kid vet the next secretary of education. This may have played well in that room, but she wasn’t running to be the president of the Gay-Straight Alliance; she was running to be president of the United States.”