Why the U.S. is not ready for Elizabeth Warren
Senator Warren has announced an "exploratory committee" for a possible presidential candidacy. The reactions of the media and national observers show that the country is not prepared for a candidate like her.
While many Democrats are debating the possibility of launching a 2020 presidential bid, Senator Elizabeth Warren's announcement that she will be creating an "exploratory committee" for a "possible campaign" is likely synonymous with "definite campaign."
Warren is the first high-ranking Democrat to announce that the presidency is on her horizon, and her performance in politics since 2008 has paved the way for this moment.
"I never thought that I would run for anything ever in my life," the Senator told the media after launching her campaign. "But America’s middle class is getting hollowed out, and the opportunities of too many of our young people are shrinking, so I’m in this fight all the way.”
Warren's announcement has faced a wide range of reactions, from timid support to strong skepticism.
The Hill, for example, has ranked its top 10 potential Democratic presidential candidates - Texas representative Beto O'Rourke tops the list, followed by Bernie Sanders, the independent senator from Vermont. Warren clocks in at fifth, a number fairly representative of the general appreciation of her candidacy.
The New York Times has called her "the favorite target of conservatives,” coinciding with opinion laid out in the Washington Post. In addition, media outlets such as CNN and the Boston Globe simply hint that her profile is more "divisive" than actually encouraging for the Democratic base.
But, for Peter Beinart, a professor of journalism at the City University of New York, the interpretation of Warren's candidacy by the media creates "a false narrative" when it comes to placing things in perspective.
In his column for The Atlantic, Beinart differentiates the clear facts - that Warren is liberal, she did not handle the issue with her Native American heritage well, and she has attacked Trump aggressively and constantly – from the reality that causes much antipathy among conservatives: she is a woman.
When Beinart argues this thesis, what really echoes this assumption are the facts borne out by recent political developments in the country, from Hillary Clinton's unsuccessful run, to Nancy Pelosi's power struggle in Congress and the aggressiveness against Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
Perhaps what is evident is that the country is not only not prepared for a female president, but it's not ready for a progressive president at all.
While platforms similar to the one championed by Bernie Sanders - grassroots politics, tuition-free education, and universal healthcare, for example - have gained traction, there is still a long way to go when it comes to considering the United States outside of the traditional two-party system.
In her campaign video, Warren advocates for equal opportunities, an inclusive society, rights for the middle class and, fundamentally, for an open and frontal struggle against the upper class, Wall Street and a Washington functioning only for a few folks - issues that give nightmares to any Republican.
Yet Sanders, who shares virtually all of these ideas, is ahead of Warren with 28 points of approval, according to CNN polls.
In the end, the problem remains the same as anticipated in the midterm elections: there are many Democrats likely gearing up to challenge Trump in 2020. However, to find one strong enough to attract the massive wave of votes needed to beat him will be increasingly difficult, especially if the country is not prepared for it.