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Sen. Warren takes on Big Oil; populism surges in Dem. Party; Lessig set to address draft Warren effort – Run Warren Run news 4/16

This is one in a series of semi-regular updates on our Run Warren Run effort and Senator Warren’s work to give all Americans a fighting chance.

WARREN TAKES ON BIG OIL. Sen. Warren, the “anti-Wall Street crusader,” took on Big Oil in a speech at the Good Jobs, Green Jobs conference in Washington, DC earlier this week, reports National Journal’s Clare Foran.

Warren slammed major oil companies—including ExxonMobil, Shell, Chevron, BP, and ConocoPhillips—for making nearly $100 billion in profits in 2014 while they “sucked down $5 billion in subsidies from the American people.” She also called for greater investment in infrastructure so that the U.S. will be able to deal with extreme weather worsened by global warming.

“A lot of people think that regulations bring higher costs,” Warren said. “But regulation is also about making sure that someone doesn’t get to beat out the competition because they’re dumping filth in the river or spewing poisons in the air.”

Warren warned that if corporations are not properly policed, the cost of doing business will be borne by “children who can’t drink the water.”

(More on Warren’s Good Jobs, Green Jobs speech from The Hill’s Kevin Cirilli)

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AND COMING SOON: Ready for Warren Prepares to Launch Climate Activist Coalition. More from National Journal’s Clare Foran on the upcoming launch of “Environmental Activists for Warren” here:

Ready for Warren, a group pushing the senator to enter the presidential race, plans to soon unveil “Environmental Activists for Warren,” National Journal has learned. … More than 1,000 volunteers already have signed on to participate, Ready for Warren says, culled from employees, donors, and volunteers for Washington’s most politically powerful green groups, including the Sierra Club, League of Conservation Voters, and Environmental Defense Fund along with progressive organizations such as 350.org, Friends of the Earth, and Greenpeace USA. (None of the green groups or their political arms have made an endorsement of any candidate in the 2016 race.)

VANDEN HEUVEL: ‘POPULIST TEMPER IS BUILDING.’ The Nation’s Katrina Vanden Heuvel writes in The Washington Post about the surging Draft Warren movement and growing “populist temper” in the Democratic Party around issues like the Trans Pacific Partnership and minimum-wage increases.

A populist temper is building in the party — symbolized by the split between the “Warren” and Wall Street wings of the party, and by the spread of the movement to draft Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) to run for the presidency. 

‘POPULISTS CAPTURE DEMOCRATIC PARTY.’ The Washington Post’s Dana Milbank makes the case that Sen. Warren’s populist appeal is gaining momentum and pushing the Democratic Party and it’s leaders to embrace her policies. Milbank points to Warren’s outspoken opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership as an example of the party’s evolution:

Twenty years ago, half of Senate Democrats and 40 percent of House Democrats voted for the North American Free Trade Agreement. This time… proponents say a best-case scenario has them winning only 10 of the 46 Democrats.

In a recent rally against Fast Track for the TPP, Warren stirred the crowd with a call to fight:

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Mass.), the Democrats’ populist star, pumped her fist and shouted into the microphone: “No more secret trade deals! Are you ready to fight? No more special deals for multinational corporations! Are you ready to fight?”

Read the full piece from Milbank here.

** COMING MONDAY – LAWRENCE LESSIG, VAN JONES, ZEPHYR TEACHOUT CALL ON WARREN TO RUN. At Civic Hall in New York City on Monday, Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig will deliver one of his signature speeches on money in politics—this time, making the case that Sen. Warren should run for president and that she’s the best candidate to tackle the issue of money in politics. Lessig will be joined by Van Jones, president of Dream Corps, and Zephyr Teachout, an associate law professor at Fordham University and former New York gubernatorial candidate.

WARREN ON TIME’S 100 MOST INFLUENTIAL LIST. Sen. Warren was named to TIME’s Magazine’s list of 100 Most Influential People for 2015, with a short blurb penned by Sec. Hillary Clinton, reports CNN’s Dan Merica. Warren joins a number of influential politicians on the list, including Clinton, President Obama, and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. Clinton writes of Warren:

Elizabeth Warren’s journey from janitor’s daughter to Harvard professor to public watchdog to U.S. Senator has been driven by an unflagging determination to level the playing field for hardworking American families like the one she grew up with in Oklahoma. She fights so hard for others to share in the American Dream because she lived it herself.

Read the full blurb on TIME’s website here.


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RUN WARREN RUN ANNOUNCES 39 COUNTY LEADERS IN EASTERN IOWA. Today, MoveOn.org Political Action announced 39 county leaders in Eastern Iowa, who will support volunteers to organize visibility events, phone banks, letter-writing, social media, and other activities to demonstrate to Senator Warren that she has the support she needs in Iowa to run and win in the caucuses. See the county leader list here.

“Today’s announcement shows that Run Warren Run has built and continues to strengthen a statewide infrastructure that will be ready on day one if Sen. Warren announces,” said Run Warren Run Iowa Field Director Blair Lawton. “Our county leaders and teams are being trained and organized to carry Sen. Warren to victory in next year’s caucuses if she decides to run, and to push for progressive change on issues Sen. Warren champions from student debt relief to opposing the Trans-Pacific Partnership.”

NBC News’ Leigh Ann Caldwell has more on what’s next for Run Warren Run:

Warren’s supporters are continuing to organize in the key primary states of Iowa and New Hampshire.

Ben Wikler, Washington director of Moveon.org and the Run Warren Run campaign, said 12 staff members in the two states are creating “the apparatus so that when she does announce she hits the ground running.”

“We’re trying to tee up a lot of that work in advance so it’s not a barrier if she decides to run,” he added, noting that it’s not too late for Warren to change her mind. 

NEW TODAY – ‘DEAR ELIZABETH WARREN.’ A new video from Ready for Warren compiles video diaries from supporters across the country encouraging Sen. Warren to run for president. See the video here.


WARREN IS HER OWN ‘DREAM’ CANDIDATE. That’s the argument CNN’s Doug Criss makes in a piece about Sen. Warren’s recent appearance on CNN’s “New Day.”

Sen. Elizabeth Warren insists she’s not running for president. But her description of a 2016 “dream” presidential candidate sounds a lot like, well, her.

Warren, during an appearance Friday on CNN’s “New Day,” said she wanted to see someone willing to fight for the middle class and “make Washington work for families again.”

Warren says she feels that Washington functions well for special interest groups and the well-connected but leaves out the rest of the nation.

“(I’ve) spent my whole life studying what’s happening to America’s middle class and watching year by year, one blow after another,” she said. “We live in an America now where the game is rigged, where Washington works really great for those who hire armies of lobbyists, armies of lawyers. It’s just not working so well for the rest of America.”

Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, also got specific with her wish list, mentioning that a candidate willing to lower the interest rates on student loans and shore up Social Security would get high marks from her.

ICYMI – WARREN ON PAPERBACK BOOK TOUR. Sen. Warren has been traveling to promote the new paperback edition of her memoir, A Fighting Chance, and Run Warren Run supporters have been popping up at readings and events across the country.

The Village Voice’s Lara Zarum has more on the Run Warren Run energy during Sen. Warren’s recent stop at the Strand bookstore in Manhattan.

“’I think everyone should write down, ‘Why aren’t you running?’ suggested Mary Simon, a 60-year-old Manhattan resident who sported thick-framed glasses and a purple jacket.”

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