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Sen. Warren's speech at the May 22, 2014 'The New Populism' conference in DC. Hat Tip to

Below the youtube link is my transcription of her speech. Please forgive any errors of transcription, typos, and paragraphing.

The game IS rigged. The rich and powerful have lobbyists.  Lobbyists, and lawyers, and plenty of friends in Congress. Everyone else not so much. Now we can whine about it, we can whimper about it, or we can fight back. Me, I've decided to fight back.

<over applause>You bet.

This is a fight over economics, over privilege, over power. But deep down this is a fight over values. Conservatives and their powerful friends will continue to be guided by their age-old principle: I've got mine, the rest of you are on your own.

But we are guided by principle too. It's a simple idea. We all do better when we work together and invest in the future. We KNOW that the economy grows when hard-working families have the opportunity to improve their lives. We KNOW that country gets stronger when we invest in helping people succeed. We KNOW that lives improve when we care for our neighbors, and help build a future, not just for some of our kids, but for all our kids.

These are Progressive values. These are America's values. These values play out every day. These values are what we're willing to fight for.

So, let's go over the list one more time <points finger at audience> and I want to hear a good strong Amen! out there.

We believe that Wall Street needs stronger rules and tougher enforcement, and we're willing to fight for it.

We believe no one should work full time and still live in poverty, and that means raising the minimum wage.

We believe that people should retire with dignity, and that means strengthening social security. And we're ready to fight for it.

We believe that a kid should have a chance to go to college without getting crushed by debt, and we're willing to fight for it.

Oh, we believe that workers have a right to come together, to bargain together, and to rebuild America's middle class, and we're willing to fight for it.

We believe -- and I can't believe I have to be saying this in 2014 -- we believe in equal pay for equal work and we're willing to fight for it.

And we believe that equal means equal and that is true in the workplace, in marriage, and in all of our families, and we are willing to fight for it.

This is how I see it. We, we the People, decide the future of this country. These are our shared values, and these are the values we are willing to fight for. This is our moment in history. We are called on to determine the future of this country. And if we stand by and let it slide away, then shame on us.

But if we get up and we fight for what we believe in, we will head this country in the right direction for ourselves, for our children, and for our grandchildren.

I hope you're ready to fight.


As a performance, first the applause. Not sure how big the crowd was; if we heard the crowd suppression mike feed instead of a floor mike: the applause lines didn't seem particularly overwhelming on the sound track. However the biggest applause getters were the right of labor and the right of equal pay.

In my view, she was definitely trying out a fiery (for her) speech-giving style. Again, hard to tell how effective it was from the audio, but I think she's more fiery when just delivering the facts.

I would ignore any rumor I might start that Warren stole the speech's topics from Hillary Clinton in an attempt to steal her core agenda.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Ah a real democrat, finally one is found (14+ / 0-)


    "I decided it is better to scream. Silence is the real crime against humanity." Nadezhda Mandelstam

    by LaFeminista on Sat May 24, 2014 at 12:00:39 AM PDT

    •  I would also love to see her as Senate (7+ / 0-)

      Majority Leader.

      "I decided it is better to scream. Silence is the real crime against humanity." Nadezhda Mandelstam

      by LaFeminista on Sat May 24, 2014 at 12:04:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  She'd probably be great at it. Question is, even (6+ / 0-)

        so, with a Republican House and a Centrist Dem President pushing Senators to back the latest Establishment scheme to put one over on the people regarding the National Stalking, er, Surveillance, the War-fomenting, the Banker's security, ...

        Is that really where she's most useful to us?

        A government is a body of people usually notably ungoverned. -- Firefly

        by Jim P on Sat May 24, 2014 at 12:10:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Best place for her? (9+ / 0-)

          The Oval Office of course


          "I decided it is better to scream. Silence is the real crime against humanity." Nadezhda Mandelstam

          by LaFeminista on Sat May 24, 2014 at 12:12:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  What sets Elizabeth Warren apart from Hillary is.. (4+ / 0-)

            ....vehemence and willingness to challenge corporatism on behalf of the middle class.  President Obama has been forced into more compromise than he would have wished, though some say it was his own doing. Regardless, his successor must possess a vehemence and an understanding that there is much unfinished business from his administration whatever the results in November of this year.  I'm not persuaded that Hillary is the one to continue the battle. Warren certainly has fire in her belly, and consistently reminds us of what she would do and not given an inch on if she were in the Oval Office.
                  Warren is actually a centrist, having been a Republican in the not distant past. She is a true progressive in a way that could enable her to rally Republicans to her side and especially the independents, but most of all the disillusioned Democrats who feel that President Obama has not been able to fulfill enough of the promise.

            •  In my opinion, for what it's worth, (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              VeggiElaine, USHomeopath, Jim P, KayCeSF

              Elizabeth Warren’s rise to national prominence over the last 6-8 years is the most encouraging political development I’ve seen in my lifetime, and I can remember all the way back to Eisenhower. Yes, Obama’s election was huge, and he’s accomplished a lot, but I think Warren’s potential to bring about crucial and long-overdue change is even greater than the potential that, in many respects, Obama seems to be backing away from.

              Warren is a fighter and a leader. That kind of politician is way too rare. I hope like hell that the popular support she’s been developing with her unequivocal and plain-spoken support for the values that matter to real people—as opposed to the “people” that our Supreme Court says corporations are—becomes so obvious to other politicians that they finally understand that the way to get votes is to quit being wishy-washy and stand up and fight. Fight for reining in Wall Street, for investing in the nation's future, for universal haelth care, for unionism, for Social Security, for real people, and for real progress.

              Our vote is our only weapon against the plutocracy’s oppressive power. I’d love to see her run for President just to see how much money the plutocrats flush down the drain trying to counter the votes she’ll get.

              Warren’s insistence that we fight back, and the example she sets as she actively does so herself, shows the same defiance that created a new nation back in the late 1700s. We need to become a new nation again.

              Thomas Paine: When my country...was set on fire about my ears, it was time to stir. It was time for every man to stir.

              by Bruce Brown on Sat May 24, 2014 at 08:08:24 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  i would love to see a senate majority (7+ / 0-)

        that was actually interested in heading in the direction warren is leading.

      •  Warren as Senate Majority Leader (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        unfangus, thomask, LaFeminista, CwV

        would be far more effective in crafting policy that would help the middle class than if she were president.  Unfortunately I doubt it'll happen because the only way Reid leaves is in a box and Wall Street already has their guy in UpChuck Schumer in a position to be next in line.  

        Still, Warren in the Senate and Pelosi calling the shots in the House will be a strong team for progressive values in this country.

        This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

        by DisNoir36 on Sat May 24, 2014 at 08:18:32 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No, with all that you describe about (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Jim P

          the intervening encumbrances Warren has to face, her best place IS the oval office.

          If you can't go thru them (Reid and Schumer), then go AROUND them.


          I know, not so simple, but if you can't get there in a straight line, use one of those nice beltway type routes around the clog.

          I am an Elizabeth Warren Democrat. Hillary is Third way, and it sure as hell ain't MY way

          by karma13612 on Sun May 25, 2014 at 09:19:24 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Quite the opposite, no doubt (12+ / 0-)
    I would ignore any rumor I might start that Warren stole the speech's topics from Hillary Clinton in an attempt to steal her core agenda.
    If Warren continues with this, uh, campaign in the same vein, Hillary might be forced to steal a few lines from her.  The obvious distaste and disingenuous manner of her delivery would be pretty awesome to behold, however.  Hillary is not her husband when it comes to lying with engaging ease -- she's pretty bad at it.  

    For someone who "isn't" running for president, Warren sure seems to be setting the foundation for something or other.  If it's a populist revival in the Democratic party, count me in.  But movements within parties need leaders, and there's only one leader I see out there.  Thanks for bringing us her words.

    We have always been at war with al Qaeda.

    by Dallasdoc on Sat May 24, 2014 at 12:18:37 AM PDT

  •  The more the merrier (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jim P, LaFeminista, Portlaw

    I don't buy an uncontested primary. If anyone wants to be a serious cadidate they need to be out stumping soon, there is an election in the mean time. Primaries are good, prove you can run.

    There are no rules, only the illusion of rules.

    by Drewid on Sat May 24, 2014 at 12:23:28 AM PDT

  •  The Inevitable One's husband (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jim P, LaFeminista, Portlaw, mwm341

    famously said "Democrats fall in love, Republicans fall in line."

    Me, I'm in love. With Elizabeth Warren!

    War beats down, and sows with salt, the hearts and minds of soldiers." Brecht

    by DaNang65 on Sat May 24, 2014 at 12:25:45 AM PDT

  •  I was there (11+ / 0-)

    Trust me, the applause was HUGE!

    It was an SRO crowd, and Sen. Warren got a standing ovation at the beginning and the end. My husband and I were in a corner of the room and started leading a chant of "Run, Elizabeth, Run!" when she finished. (She shushed us ;-)

    I've been thinking about writing a diary about the conference. We had so many great and inspiring speakers! Bernie Sanders (he's fabulous), Jared Bernstein, Sherrod Brown (also fab-fab-fab), even Rev. Barber from the Moral Mondays movement (who was incredible and inspiring, though we had to leave before he finished so we wouldn't miss our train home). And other great speakers who I'd never heard of but will be looking for from now on.

    But I didn't take notes, I was there to have my heart lifted. Which it was!!

    West Virginia's new motto: Ex Os, Ex Mens (go look it up)

    by blonde moment on Sat May 24, 2014 at 03:12:07 AM PDT

    •  This diary had no traction. Use my transcription (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      if you want to do one of your own, as an eyewitness. Please. Forget Warren for a moment, just look at the Agenda itself, and there we've got something worth repeating.

      A government is a body of people usually notably ungoverned. -- Firefly

      by Jim P on Sat May 24, 2014 at 10:05:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  If This is Any Hope, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    redstatemike, Jim P

    Howard Dean was pretty mediocre as a speaker throughout his campaign. Within not terribly many months afterward, though, he had learned to be a very good speaker: tight, punchy, and comfortably blending the concepts from his education and experience with a linguistic framework comfortable for the average listener.

    Warren starts out well ahead of Dean in a number of these areas. I glanced at a few moments of this speech and I agree it looks like experience building in a new setting & style of public speaking for her, but I expect her to be at least as quick a study as Dean was.

    Hopefully unlike Dean's speaking maturation, during hers, her big public splash lies in her future.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sat May 24, 2014 at 05:45:02 AM PDT

  •  The Woman not running for President (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mwm341, Jim P, Johnny Q, KayCeSF

    to my knowledge has never stated that she will not be running for president, only that she is not running now.

    So, hope is still there.

    _______________The DOD/ War Department, which consumes 22% of the national budget, is the world's largest employer with 3.2 million employees.

    by allenjo on Sat May 24, 2014 at 06:15:56 AM PDT

  •  Elizabeth is every liberal's dream candidate (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jim P

    I have never heard her utter one word I disagreed with. And her enthusiasm is contagious.

    Hillary is the odds-on nominee for 2016, but Elizabeth is the future.

    'Tis with our judgments as our watches, none go just alike, yet each believes his own. - Alexander Pope

    by liberaldad2 on Sat May 24, 2014 at 08:29:12 PM PDT

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