Elizabeth Warren is making the promises she cannot keep, writes S.E. Cupp.
Analyzing from 3C's perspective (Cost, Constitution, and Congress), S.E. further gives details on why Warren's plans will probably never come to life.
Source: NY Daily News
Back in September 2018, as the Massachusetts junior senator was still mulling a 2020 bid, a new poll out of her home state sent shock waves through political circles. Fifty-eight percent of Massachusetts voters did not want Elizabeth Warren to run for president.
That was the start of a rocky few months for Warren. In October, in response to complaints about her having referred to herself years ago as Native American, she released her DNA results to catastrophic effect. In November, the Boston Globe ran an editorial imploring her not to run, saying she’d missed her window. In February of this year, just a week before formally announcing her bid for president, she issued an apology to Cherokee Nation for the DNA test fiasco, to mixed results. This was not a great start.
Flash forward 10 months and Warren has managed to leap over nearly all of her competitors in a very crowded and competitive field of Democrats, to sit, according to latest polls, just behind former Vice President Joe Biden as the first choice in many early states.
How far she’s come.
At this point in the 2016 election, one year out, Trump was also a frontrunner, topping Ben Carson in a November 2015 Quinnipiac poll. Then, there were 15 Republican candidates still in that race, as there are 18 Democratic candidates still in this one.
At this stage in 2016, however, few took Trump’s candidacy as seriously as many take Warren’s, despite his polling. It didn’t matter that the wild and, in some cases offensive policy proposals he was making to voters weren’t ever going to be implementable even if he did win. But win, he did. And though his base is still firmly with him, they’ve been stiffed on a number of big promises.
While they loved him for his border-wall promises — mainly, that there would be one and that Mexico would pay for it — he’s not been able to make good on either. Many of his campaign boasts were wildly unrealistic, like denuclearizing North Korea and bringing back coal and steel jobs that were long gone.
Others were always going to face constitutional and judicial resistance, from ending birthright citizenship to bringing back torture and opening up libel laws against the press.
I remember asking his supporters as the election neared if it bothered them that most of what Trump was promising he could never deliver.
“Nope,” they said. The promises were seemingly enough.
Warren may be banking on the same calculation from Democratic voters — because most of what she is promising will never happen either.
For all of her plans, there are three main categories explaining why each will probably never come to life.
First, there’s the cost.
When you tally up the cost of her unprecedented expansion of government — universal health care; increasing Social Security benefits; free public college; canceling student debt; free childcare; environmental justice programs; a commitment to 100% clean energy — Warren’s price tag will add trillions in debt and require trillions in taxpayer funding. We’d likely go bankrupt before she could achieve a fraction of what she is promising.
Second, there’s the Constitution.
It’s a little thing, but our founding document would likely be a major hindrance to Warren’s agenda. The constitutionality of her proposed tax on net worth (along with her signature Obama-era achievement, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau) has already come under significant scrutiny.
Additionally, her proposed ban on fracking and some of her proposed gun legislation won’t likely survive the courts either.
Finally, there’s Congress.
Few believe Democrats will control both Houses of Congress in 2021, and even if they manage to, Republicans will still be around to play spoiler on plenty of big agenda items. (Just ask Trump how pesky Democrats proved to be despite Republicans controlling Congress for two years.)
A President Warren would have to work not only with Republicans, who have successfully flushed most open-minded moderates out of the party to appease Trump, but with Democrats, most of whom won their own House elections in 2018 by resisting the very things she’s proposing. That makes her agenda a huge uphill battle.
Warren’s bold plans have clearly excited the progressive wing of the Democratic Party. Whether they are underpinned by reality should matter. But she’s betting her voters, like Trump’s, care more about what’s imaginable than what’s achievable.
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