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Tuesday, 10 December 2019

Warren Using Technicality To Keep Claiming That She Doesn't Do 'Big-Dollar Fundraisers'

The flash came over Twitter as deep into the weekend as it possibly could have: Just hours before the working week began, Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s campaign dropped documents that showed she made $2 million consulting for corporations and financial firms while she was still in academia. Telling them how greedy they were, I’m sure.
The Washington Post reported that the consulting “often involved companies dealing with bankruptcy, which was her specialty as an academic.”
Fair enough.
But the next sentence probably should have set the klaxons blaring: “Her campaign had been asked repeatedly for the information and had declined to release it multiple times.”
And when they decided to do so, it was late on a Sunday night during the holiday season on the day before yet another impeachment hearing in the House Judiciary Committee. This is clearly something she wanted America to read.
“Her work for some of the companies doesn’t fit neatly with her current presidential campaign brand as a crusader against corporate interests,” the article continued in an act of Herculean understatement.
But this isn’t about that act of obvious hypocrisy, although it’s in the same vein. Instead, it’s about how she raises money — and how, as is often apparent in Warren’s campaign, what she says and what she does are two dramatically different things.
Warren says she doesn’t do big-dollar fundraisers at all. Take her appearance on the NBC’s “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” on Wednesday when she said, “I don’t do big-dollar fundraisers at all.”
Or take her interview in October with CBS News when she said, “I’m not going to go do the big-dollar fundraisers. I’m just not going to do it.”
“I will not be forced to make changes in how I raise money,” the Massachusetts Democrat said. “Look, for me this is pretty straight forward. Either you think democracy works and electing a president is all about going behind closed doors with bazillionaires and corporate executives and lobbyists and scooping up as much money as possible. Or you think it’s about a grassroots, let’s build this from the ground up.”
She added “that we can build this together. And that’s exactly what we’re doing.”
Well, sort of kind of not really.
See, Warren isn’t hosting any big-dollar fundraisers for herself.
She doesn’t need to at this point. Excluding underperforming moneybags Tom Steyer, who’s pretty much self-financed his own campaign to the tune of nearly $50 million last quarter, Warren outraised almost every candidate except Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders — and while Sanders has a dedicated fanbase, the likelihood that he’ll find himself giving the victory speech at the Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee next summer is remote. 
So Warren has no shortage of money — right now, anyhow. If she wins the nomination, she’ll almost certainly be at a massive money disadvantage to President Donald Trump, who’s running virtually unopposed for the GOP nomination. She’ll need the help of the Democratic National Committee … which she’s been giving big-dollar fundraisers for, the type she swore she wasn’t going to do.
“Warren on Thursday spoke at the DNC’s IWillVote Gala fundraiser in Boston,” The Daily Caller reported. “The DNC didn’t publicize ticket prices for the event, and didn’t return an email inquiring about the costs, but an archived invitation shows the DNC charged up to $50,000 per ticket package when it held the same event in Atlanta earlier in 2019.
“Contribution levels for the DNC’s IWillVote Gala in Atlanta in June ranged from $1,000 to $50,000, with donors receiving better perks for larger donations, according to the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine.”
She was also a featured speaker at the DNC’s Women’s Leadership Forum Conference in October.
That fundraiser featured tickets ranging from $100 to $5,000, depending on how much access you wanted. But she’s not doing big-dollar fundraisers.
Of course, the DNC isn’t one and the same with the Warren candidacy — and thank goodness, considering the 2016 fiasco. That said, if and when Warren becomes the clear frontrunner for the nomination, it’s the DNC’s job to get behind her. So, what’s the big deal here?
The big deal is the lie. This is something that would have been better handled from the start as being a mega-bucks fundraiser that Warren participated in. What’s the big deal? If Elizabeth Warren is going to win the nomination, she’s going to need the DNC’s support.
However, by saying she’d never take part in these fundraisers, what she’s doing is reaping the benefits of being an anti-establishment, anti-big money candidate while still benefiting from the establishment and big money.
This is the same thing as casting your campaign as being anti-corporate while taking money for consulting from major corporations — or from trying to make it more difficult for middle-class parents to send their kids somewhere else than public school when she herself sent at least one of her children to private school at one point.
This is who Elizabeth Warren is. If this is who you want to nominate, Democrats, be prepared for a whole nomination season with fun stuff like this. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

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