Republicans should make Elizabeth Warren the voice of the Democrats

Warren as the voice of the Left might be the best-case scenario for Republicans. For one thing, Warren is no Barack Obama on the charisma front. For another, Warren saves conservatives the trouble of going after socialist strawmen. They’ll have a real one.

Still, there’s one potential hitch in the plan. Republicans, like everyone else, tend to assume politicians they loathe will be equally loathed by most of the electorate. Be cautious of what you ask for. You’ll no doubt remember how many liberal pundits acted like the prospect of Marco Rubio or Ted Cruz as president was scarier than Trump when they thought the latter had no chance in a general.

The real question is would Warren’s left-populism play on the electoral map Trump has rejiggered? Is her protectionist trade rhetoric enough to win over white-working class voters in Pennsylvania coal country even though she rails against fossil fuels and cheap energy? Would a lawyer who built a political career growing bureaucracies and pushing regulatory burdens on Americans be popular with rural workers in Ohio? Is it possible that someone who believes Obamacare didn’t exert enough government control over the health-care system going to run strong in a general election campaign in suburban Indiana? Moreover, can a Northeasterner with extreme social views bring working-class Missourians home to Democrats? Liberals from Massachusetts, after all, are still 0-3 (here, here, here) over the past 50 years. And Warren is farther Left than any of them, by a mile.