Elizabeth Warren is interested in being Hillary Clinton’s running mate according to a story at The Hill:
Warren’s advisers have reportedly been in contact with the Clinton campaign in recent weeks, but the Massachusetts senator has not yet spoken to Clinton or the campaign about filling the role of vice president.
Warren is also looking to advance her policy priorities, such as reducing income inequality, which she said are “more progressive” than Clinton’s. She is not sure a job as vice president would be the best platform on which to advance those issues.
Still, Warren has signaled interest in the possibility of being Clinton’s running mate.
There’s a fine line between eagerness and desperation that Warren is walking here. She has not endorsed Hillary which, on the one hand, makes her a hold out and, on the other hand, positions her as someone who is not part of the Clinton wing of the Democratic party. Warren, like Sanders, is more of a progressive ideologue. As it happens, that may be exactly what Clinton needs to knit together the Democratic Party. Simply put, picking Warren probably gives you most of Bernie’s supporters.
But there is a real risk associated with this. First, Donald Trump polls best with white, working-class men. If Hillary were to pick a white, male running-mate that might help blunt some of Trump’s advantage. Picking a progressive woman probably won’t have the same impact (though it obviously could give Clinton a further advantage among women voters).
Last month, when Elizabeth Warren started her Twitter rants against Donald Trump, I suggested that she was sounding a lot like someone who wanted the VP job. At the time, Politico had a story outlining four reasons why Clinton would hesitate to pick her. One of those reasons stood out to me, “Clinton insiders worry Warren could upstage the likely Democratic nominee during the general election.” I still think that’s the most likely source of hesitation from the Clinton camp. As I wrote last month:
Hillary has been struggling to close the deal against an aging socialist with bad hair. Long after she has been the presumptive nominee based on the delegate count, Democrats keep handing her defeats like the one last night in Indiana. They may be ready to vote for Clinton in the general election but they aren’t excited about it the way they get excited about Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.
Adding Warren to the ticket would just be a constant reminder that Hillary lacks personal charisma and doesn’t hold the same appeal to her party’s far-left base. Imagine if the crowds at Clinton rallies take to chanting “War-ren! War-ren!” instead of Hillary’s name. Hillary doesn’t want to spend the rest of this race feeling the Bern from her own VP pick.
Hillary wants this to be all about her. Unfortunately, a significant number of young, energetic Democrats don’t feel the same way. The risk of being overshadowed by her own VP is real but so is the risk of losing the support of a portion of the progressive base that, right now, is sticking with Sanders despite the delegate count. Warren still looks like the obvious solution, albeit with some risk to Hillary’s pride involved.