Via Legal Insurrection, which headlines this aptly as “Warren vs. Brown is the new Wisconsin recall.” Remember that widely-linked NYT piece back in November about the left transferring their utopian expectations of Obama to Warren? Here’s the perfect belated video accompaniment, replete with a grinning Van Jones floating the idea of a President Fauxcahontas a few minutes in. From the Times piece:
Even though she’s running for the Senate and not for the presidency, the early devotion to Warren recalls the ardor once felt by many for Obama. On its face, this is odd: Warren is not a world-class orator, she is not young or shiny or new, she doesn’t fizz with the promise of American possibility that made the Obama campaign pop. Instead, she’s a mild-mannered Harvard bankruptcy-law professor and a grandmother of three, a member of the older-white-lady demographic (she’s 62) that was written off in 2008 as being the antimatter of hope and change.
And yet, on a deeper level, her popularity makes perfect sense. Embracing Warren as the next “one” is, in part, a way of getting over Obama; she provides an optimistic distraction from the fact that under our current president, too little has changed, for reasons having to do both with the limitations of the political system and the limitations of the man. She makes people forget that estimations of him were too overheated, trust in his powers too fervid. As the feminist philanthropist Barbara Lee told me of Warren, “This moment of disillusion is why people find her so compelling, because she brings forth the best in people and she brings back that excitement.”…
It also helps that Warren has never run for office before. Like Obama in ’08, she’s a blank screen onto which admirers can project whatever they most want to see. Over the course of her career, Warren has been able to advocate for struggling people without actually having to work for — and thus inevitably disappoint — them. What her admirers on the left see is a woman who rises above everything wormy in Washington, including indiscriminate partisan loyalty.
It’s take two on progressive utopia, this time with a totally revamped messenger. Instead of banking on a young guy with a thin resume but loads of charisma and rhetorical talent to convince America to embrace Great Society II, they’re banking on an older woman with little charisma or oratorical power but a long CV and an even deeper commitment than O to “economic justice.” (One point in common between them: They’re both into invented identity.) I think LI is right that her race against Brown, more than any other, will be used by the left as a hedge against the presidential election. If they win both, they’ll be sky high; if Romney wins but Warren pulls it out in Massachusetts, they’ll be bummed but excited to have her as the new de facto leader of the opposition in the Senate. And if both lose, that’ll be total Waterloo. I can’t imagine to whom they’d turn after that. Hillary in desperation? She’ll probably lie low for a year or two after the election and, with no official soapbox and no looming presidential race, won’t be well positioned to attack Romney. Progressives aren’t big fans of hers anyway. Andrew Cuomo? He’s a top prospect but it’d be hard for him to lead the charge in D.C. from Albany. Pelosi? She’ll be yesterday’s news if the GOP holds the House. Sherrod Brown? Sherrod who?
It’s really Warren or nothing for the left if Obama crumbles. On that note, go read Michael Patrick Leahy’s newest piece at Breitbart.com about her academic record. The story’s moving on from questions about her ancestry but there are questions of other sorts popping up.