The most terrifying woman in Washington.
Governed by who knows what alignment of the stars or conventional wisdom, this was the weekend that traditional media decided to take a collective dump on Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Maybe it had something to do with her temerity of being both a woman and
smarter than the CNBC team
. That, for many, is just not acceptable.
That includes Boston Globe columnist Alex Beam, who has somehow entirely forgotten that Warren is responsible for the very existence of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and sniffs that in her six months in office, she hasn't passed any laws. (Apparently, Beam is working under the bizarre notion that the Senate actually does stuff these days.) Instead, he says, she's been the "Big Noise," "pandering," "baying at the moon," "silly," and a "feckless demagogue." No, no condescension or sexism there. Or in Beam's suggestion that Warren's introduction of a new Glass-Steagall bill means that she doesn't understand that there's a difference between banks and the financial sector. It's a column that is so ham-handed and overtly hostile you'd think it had come out of D.C., and not Boston.
But, of course, Politico has the D.C. angle covered, and in the guise of a news story rather than an editorial, which make its hit job all the worse. Consider their premise: "Warren’s causing some heartburn among her fellow Democrats." Here's what her fellow Democrats had to say about her in the story, which is primarily about her efforts to keep a fair student loan interest rate:
The substance and style of Warren’s challenges to the country’s financial system have made her a favorite of her party’s liberal wing. Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) was effusive in his praise for Warren, whom he called a like-minded lawmaker on the ideological spectrum.
“Sometimes I just — how can we be so lucky? I mean that sounds pretty gooey, I admit, but I mean it,” Rockefeller said. [...]
Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, signed on to the [student loan] deal but said he sympathized with Warren’s arguments.
“I think she’s onto something,” he said. [...]
“I respect Elizabeth’s point of view and her intelligence when it comes to this issue. She is challenging some basic premises of the student loan program,” Durbin told POLITICO. “I would join her in those challenges, but I’m trying to work within the world of political reality.”
The only people Politico quotes as having "heartburn" because of Warren are Republicans.
Rounding out the gossip about D.C.'s reaction to Warren is The Hill which is full of stories about how she's not fitting in in the "clubby Senate," and the real problem many of her colleagues might have with her: She asked for and got Sen. Ted Kennedy's desk in the Senate chamber. Seriously.
The Village and its hangers-on must be really scared of Warren's ability to shake that world up if they're expending so much effort to try to marginalize her. And with good reason—she's an outsider with the brains and the grit and the determination to change the status quo. She might not have the Village, but that probably doesn't bother her too much. She's got the rest of the country behind her.