How Elizabeth Warren is Pulling a Bernie for Election Season
Bernie Sanders started kicked off a lot of change for the Democrats in 2016–change for the worse.
His candidacy and “grass roots” naive activism set off a chain effect that helped candidates like Ilhan Omar and (everybody’s favorite) “AOC” win elections.
In fact, without Bernie, these candidates might have never run at all.
But perhaps the most insidious thing about “The Sanders Effect” is how it has affected politicians who are older and know better.
You might not think of MA Senator Elizabeth Warren as someone who knows better. But she’s now floating ideas that she hasn’t floated much in the past–if ever.
Warren knows which way the winds are blowing, and she wants to win votes in the post-2016 democratic landscape.
To do that, she’s stolen widely from the Bernie Sanders playbook. Here are her three biggest plays so far.
1. Elizabeth Warren an the Promise of “Free” College
What’s one of the biggest differences between liberal and conservative voters? Conservative voters know that there’s no such thing as a free lunch.
We understand that many left-leaning voters are still young, and simply many not understand this fact of life yet. Elizabeth Warren understands it, too. In fact, it looks like she’s counting on it for votes.
Warren hasn’t gone into much detail on this aspect of her plan, except that it will rely on a “wealth tax”.
In other words, tax those evil supposed-rich people (many of whom would be surprised to find out they are “rich) and give it to the government. Because the government never mishandles funds–right?
2. She Also Wants to Eliminate Student Debt–For Some
It’s not just the extremely young crowd Warren is going after.
She’s going after graduates and parents with her proposal to forgive student debt in households that make less than $100,000 a year.
What she doesn’t seem to be counting on is that, these days, $100,000 doesn’t always make for a wealthy household.
Especially one that is under the often-significant burden of student debt (and likely, other debts as well).
We agree that student debt is a problem.
The cost of higher education has increased out of all proportion in the last 20 years. But we don’t that Elizabeth Warren has the best plan to solve it.
And we do think that easing student debt should be an option for everyone. Nobody who makes $100,000+ a year got there the easy way. That kind of nose-to-the-grindstone attitude should be rewarded, not penalized.
3. She’s Come Up With New Ideas for Health Care–Fresh fro 2019! And It Ties in with Identity Politics (Sort Of)
Elizabeth Warren has voted almost party line when it comes to (pro) Obamacare and (anti) GOP health reform. That’s to be expected.
But nobody really expected some of the health care “solutions” she’s proposed since she hit the campaign trail.
Many of these reforms would actually punish some of the people they are (supposedly) intended to help.
Take maternal mortality, for example. Maternal mortality among African American women is 3-4 times that of the national average.
Regardless of what Team Warren wants to say about conservatives, it’s a sad fact that we all wish was not so.
Warren’s proposal? It comes in two parts.
The first part is to give more money to hospitals who help that rate go down. That sounds fair enough on the surface.
But the second part of her proposal is to take money away from hospitals that don’t improve that rate.
As though doctors are going to say, “Oh, we’ll get funding taken away, better work a little harder at not letting these babies die!” This presupposed some pretty un-generous things about doctors.
It’s also going to make the problem worse.
The facts are that many African Americans have dis-proportionally bad access to good health care.
Many live close to hospitals that are either underfunded, or simply not as well-funded as more “uptown” hospitals. In other words, the reason for the higher infant mortality rate probably has a lot to do with economic conditions.
And Warren’s plan will just make that worse.
(Another thing that’s off-kilter about this carrot-and-stick plan: It assumes some very ungenerous things about doctors. First, that they are intentionally letting African American babies die. Second, that they are doing this somehow for monetary reasons–and all they need is a little bribe to suddenly start caring about the lives of infants! Which says a lot about Massachusetts the
Or, as Warren said, “The best way to do that is to use money to make it happen, because we gotta have change and we gotta have change now.”
We couldn’t have said it better ourselves.