The hosts of The View had a lot to discuss with Sen. Elizabeth Warren on Tuesday’s episode, including panelist Meghan McCain, even though some on Twitter zeroed-in on one particular moment where it seemed the Democratic presidential candidate was ignoring McCain’s questions.
It’s true that McCain, 35, seemingly couldn’t really get a comment in during a segment about Warren’s tax plans on the wealthy and how Warren wants to pay for her ambitious social programs. But elsewhere in the episode, McCain and the senator discussed Iran, the military and diversity in politics.
Warren, 70, joined the show to talk about everything from President Donald Trump‘s surprising airstrike on an Iranian general last week to his upcoming impeachment trial in the Senate and her 2020 campaign.
Elizabeth Warren is often portrayed in media as a figure of the left-wing, locked in a battle with Bernie Sanders for the progressive base of the party. In fact, polling frequently shows she's the second choice not just of Sanders voters, but of Joe Biden and Pete Buttigieg supporters, too.
Seeking a spark heading into the Iowa caucuses, Warren and her allies are making a surprising closing argument: That she’s best positioned to unite and excite the party — and is therefore the most electable.
It’s the first time Warren’s orbit has made the electability pitch so overtly. But the campaign has been quietly implementing that strategy since 2018, when Warren raised or donated $11 million to Democratic candidates and began drawing subtle distinctions with Sanders (She described herself as a "capitalist to my bones,” in contrast to Sanders preference for democratic socialism). Warren has also mostly abstained from attacking other Democrats in an attempt not to alienate supporters of other candidates. Her campaign staff reflects the approach, with a mix of officials from Sanders, Barack Obama, and Hillary Clinton’s past campaigns.
“She has gone above and beyond to convince establishment types that she is a team player and a Democrat,” said Ian Sams, the former national press secretary for Kamala Harris’ presidential campaign. “I don’t think they see her as a left-wing extremist, and they respect her seriousness and policy chops.”
Warren’s campaign has long resisted publicly engaging in coverage of polls and strategy, and the important but ill-defined concept of “electability.” The pivot to an explicit horse-race message, coming as she’s dipped or plateaued in polls and as her fundraising slowed in the final quarter before voting begins, is part of a larger attempt to answer voters’ concerns about beating Trump.
“The polling says, well, perhaps that a lot of older voters, go one way, right? And younger voters go another way,” Castro said in implicit references to Biden and Sanders. “You have a preponderance of younger voters that support Elizabeth and older voters that also support Elizabeth….Elizabeth Warren is the candidate who can unite the entire Democratic Party.” Highlighting that message, the Warren campaign posted that section of Castro’s remarks on social media.
In the wake of Tuesday night’s Democratic debate, one of Twitter’s trending hashtags was #WarrenIsASnake. Angry social media users have been tweeting the hashtag, along with its partner hashtag #NeverWarren, and flooding Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s replies with snake emojis.
The trend seems to have begun with some Sen. Bernie Sanders supporters, who were angry with Warren for maintaining that Sanders told her privately that he didn’t believe a woman could win the 2020 presidential election, even after Sanders denied saying any such thing. After a while, though, the hashtags continued trending not only because of anti-Warren Twitter users denouncing her, but also because Warren fans were using the hashtags to denounce Sanders and proclaim their support for Warren. (And possibly because of some bots, too. Twitter in 2020!)
But it’s notable that this ostensibly political argument is centered on the idea of Warren being a “snake” — because using the snake emoji to troll an opponent is not an idea that arose out of politics. It’s an idea that arose out of fandom. Specifically, it arose out of celebrity stan culture.
Which means that this political debate is looking less and less like a discussion about the electability of the candidates and more and more like stan trolling.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) has launched two ads in Iowa as the campaign hits its final week ahead of the state’s first-in-the-nation caucuses.
The two ads from the top-tier Democratic hopeful take different tones, with one entitled “Betsy” and focusing on Republican family members in Warren's family who pledge to vote for her and another entitled “Why She Will Beat Him” which emphasizes Trump’s upper-class status growing up.
The “Betsy” clip plays audio of Warren’s brothers, niece and nephew praising the senator while clips show the Massachusetts progressive interacting with her family.
“Many of our family are Republicans, but every single one of us love Aunt Betsy and we’d do anything in the world for her,” Warren’s nephew Mark says in the ad, while sporting a Warren campaign hat.
“The whole world will be a better place with her being president, not just rich people in the world, everybody in the world,” he added at the end.