Perhaps the most vocal and even most visible Progressive member of the Senate Democrat caucus, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) is reportedly “under consideration for a leadership position.”
If Hillary Clinton is to be challenged from the Left for her party’s nomination in 2016, many think Warren is just the person to do it. A leadership role would not only raise her profile, it would be interpreted as signal that Democrats may not be too quick to compromise with an incoming Republican senate majority.
Having Warren in a leadership position would give the Senate’s most high-profile progressive member a voice in setting the caucus’ policy agenda. She recently wrote a Washington Post op-ed, reflecting on the party’s midterm losses, that called on Congress and the administration to push forward with progressive proposals instead of cutting deals with Republicans simply for the sake of doing so. From her op-ed:
Before leaders in Congress and the president get caught up in proving they can pass some new laws, everyone should take a skeptical look at whom those new laws will serve. At this very minute, lobbyists and lawyers are lining up by the thousands to push for new laws — laws that will help their rich and powerful clients get richer and more powerful. Hoping to catch a wave of dealmaking, these lobbyists and lawyers — and their well-heeled clients — are looking for the chance to rig the game just a little more. […]
Yes, we need action. But action must be focused in the right place: on ending tax laws riddled with loopholes that favor giant corporations, on breaking up the financial institutions that continue to threaten our economy, and on giving people struggling with high-interest student loans the same chance to refinance their debt that every Wall Street corporation enjoys. There’s no shortage of work that Congress can do, but the agenda shouldn’t be drawn up by a bunch of corporate lobbyists and lawyers.
There have also been reports that Chuck Schumer might like to take Reid’s leadership position, if he thinks a challenge could succeed. That would lay the groundwork for an increasingly Progressive Democrat Party that believes the political landscape in 2016 will be much friendlier to their candidates, than was 2014.
The Republicans will be defending far more seats than Democrats in 2016 and if Democrats succeed in taking back the Senate and possibly winning the White House with new Progressive leadership in place, the changes brought about by Barack Obama might only qualify as a beginning of things to come.
Warren has criticized Obama from the Left, as have other progressive Democrats and they shouldn’t be seen as a rubber stamp for any Hillary bid for the nomination in two years..