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Elizabeth Warren Supporters Only Have Eyes For Her

Image: Elizabeth Warren Supporters Only Have Eyes For Her
General atmosphere at the New Hampshire launch of the 'Run Warren Run' event urging Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D- Mass., to run for President in 2016. (Paul Marotta/ Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 25 Mar 2015 01:51 PM

Elizabeth Warren's most ardent supporters have loyalty just for her, even though she says she is not interested in running for president, and that devotion may spell problems for other Democrats hoping to vie against Hillary Clinton for the 2016 nomination.

There are others like Martin O'Malley, Jim Webb, and Bernie Sanders, who rail against the financial sector and corporate excess, reports CNN, but Warren's supporters say they all pale in comparison to her, and they are simply not interested in supporting anyone else.

The Draft Warren movement activists say that it's not just her fight for economic equality, but her personal story that makes them consider her the perfect alternative to Clinton's more centrist positions.

But their support for a first-term senator who insists she is not running for president could thin out efforts for other people who plan to challenge Clinton, political analysts say, and if Warren is telling the truth about not running for president, it's not certain her booming grassroots supporters will transfer their support to another candidate.

And Warren does not seem likely to change her mind any time soon, with her press secretary, Lacey Rose, telling CNN that "as Sen. Warren has said many times, she is not running for president and doesn't support the draft efforts."

Despite the denials, her fans say they want to remind voters that she championed economic justice for years before she became a public figure. They point to her background as a daughter of a janitor, saying that sets her apart, as she did not come from a wealthy family.

Adam Benforado, Warren's former student and teaching assistant at Harvard Law School, told CNN he remembers Warren and her "no BS" sensibility that she shows in congressional hearings and on the Senate floor.

"For me, it was a mix of fear and awe," said Benforado, now a law professor at Drexel University. "She wants a straight answer from people and I think that's what people so desperately want. ... It's that genuine real talk that I think is very hard to find on Capitol Hill."

On Sunday, The Boston Globe added to the calls for Warren to run, saying it would be a mistake to allow Hillary Clinton to win the nomination unchallenged.

The "Run, Warren, Run" campaign, which was launched by by MoveOn.org and Democracy for America, is already beginning efforts in early primary states like Iowa, hiring staff and recruiting volunteers, and deny they're opposing other potential Democratic candidates.

"People come to us and say if she doesn't get in the race, does that mean you're going to push for Bernie? And that assumes this is somehow an anti-Clinton campaign. And the Draft Warren effort decidedly is not," said Neil Sroka of Democracy for America.

But not all of Warren's supporters are involved in the Draft Warren campaign, as some, like The Progressive Change Campaign Committee, want all potential Democratic candidates, even Clinton, to adopt more of her views.

"By focusing on the cult of personality around Elizabeth Warren, they're completely missing out on the opportunity to be a part of a larger and more important conversation about where Democrats stand on critical issues," said a Democratic strategist, who declined to be identified by CNN.

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Elizabeth Warren's most ardent supporters have loyalty just for her, even though she says she is not interested in running for president, and that devotion may spell problems for other Democrats hoping to vie against Hillary Clinton for the 2016 nomination.
Elizabeth Warren, draft, Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, Martin OMalley
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2015-51-25
Wednesday, 25 Mar 2015 01:51 PM
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