The Liberal Lioness

By Dan

In January Elizabeth Warren was sworn into the Senate to much fanfare and cheers from the left, and jeers and fears from the right. Seven months in, she’s held true to her word to work for the people of Massachusetts, and a lot of people in Washington aren’t happy about it.

She has officially taken the reigns as the senior Senator from Massachusetts and is quickly filling the role Teddy Kennedy left as the “Liberal Lion” of the Senate. But we all knew that the Lionesses do the dirty work in a pride of lions (thanks Lion King!), and Warren is doing just that.

A quick rundown of what she’s been doing in the senate shows some great footage of her leaving banking regulators dumbfounded in her first committee hearing, and other regulators nearly speechless in another.

Recently, however, Warren has been ruffling the feathers of a few too many people on either side of the aisle. Last Thursday she balked at the “deal” Democrats made with Republicans to “relieve” student loan debt.

Instead of using her Bank on Student Loan Debt Act that would have let students borrow at the same rate as big banks (less than 1%), the Democrats folded like a chair and caved to the republican plan. Let’s let EDubs explain the Republican plan: 

She got a lot of backlash from fellow Democrats, including President Obama, for not supporting the bill.

However, she has enough star-power that she has been able to attract bipartisan support for her  21st century Glass-Steagall Act, which would separate commercial and investment banking and led to this viral clip:

The right has been noticeably scared of Warren during her seven months in office. The senate has been essentially liberal-free since Kennedy’s death in 2009. Sure, there are “liberal” senators, but none with the charisma, credentials, and backbone Warren showed during her candidacy.

Warren promised to hold the big banks accountable when she was running for senate, and to say she kept her promise would be an understatement. Not only did she essentially create the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, but after the Big Banks (and Republicans) fought to keep her from being pegged its director, she chipped away and finally got Richard Cordray confirmed as the Director of the new watchdog agency.

So what is next for Warren? The Glass-Steagall Act is likely not to pass due to Republican obstructionism in the Senate (are we surprised?) and crazies in the House. She may have lost on the Student Loan bill, but she brought awareness to the issue, often just as important as the legislation itself.

Some have suggested she’s gearing up for a 2016 Presidential run. But she won’t run. Not in 2016, and likely not ever. And trust me, as a true Warren lover (in case you didn’t know), I would love her in the Oval Office. But her place is in the Senate. She is perfect for the Senate, and likely won’t have to worry about a legitimate challenge for as long as she’s in office. She also shouldn’t need a failed presidential run filled with controversy to figure that out.

Warren is truly becoming the heiress apparent to Ted Kennedy and is deserving of the nickname to follow in his footsteps.

The Lioness

The Lioness

New to D St. Politics: This post…in 6 Seconds

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