Elizabeth Warren is once again insisting she’s not running for president in 2016. Still, Warren’s backers, who see her as a more progressive alternative to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, continue to hold out hope.
The Massachusetts senator — whose profile has grown following her recent effort to diminish Wall Street’s influence in the party — was asked by NPR on Monday about progressive groups that have continued to encourage her to make a bid for the Oval Office. “I’m not running for president,” insisted Warren.
“That’s not what we’re doing. We had a really important fight in the United States Congress just this past week. And I’m putting all my energy into that fight and to see what happens after this," she said.
NPR’s Steve Inskeep noted in Warren’s answer that, “You’re putting that in the present tense, though. Are you never going to run?” to which Warren repeated, “I am not running for president.” Inskeep continued, “You’re not putting a ‘never’ on that.” Warren insisted once again, “I am not running for president. You want me to put an exclamation point on the end?”
A group of more than 300 former Obama staffers organized by the super PAC Ready For Warren recently wrote an open letter urging the Democrat to make a bid for the 2016 race. In addition, the liberal grassroots organization MoveOn.org has launched an initiative to draft Warren, and it plans on hosting a rally in the political battleground state of Iowa later this week.
The freshman senator made a name for herself as a pugilistic populist unafraid of battering Wall Street with progressive rhetoric. Last week, she led liberal opposition to the Obama-approved $1.1 trillion government spending bill and focused her scathing criticism on a provision that would weaken the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law. The legislation passed on Saturday night despite Warren's efforts.
She has also spoken out against Obama’s nomination of Antonio Weiss as an undersecretary for the Treasury Department, insisting that Weiss, currently the head of global investment banking at Lazard, is too deeply entrenched with Wall Street.
Despite Warren taking issue with both the spending bill and the Weiss nomination, the White House insisted on Friday that Warren and the president have a good relationship. “I continue to believe that Sen. Warren and the president have the same kinds of goal and priorities,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest said on Friday, adding he thinks “those shared values will be on display over the next couple of years as well.”