A Modest Proposal, or, How to Kill Four Birds with One Stone


This afternoon, Paul Waldman hyperventilates that Warren’s wrenching downfall says something terrible about 2020, namely, that a woman can’t be nominated for president by the Democratic Party.

I just argued that the simplest explanation for her downfall is that she was trying to occupy a political space—just to the right of Bernie Sanders—where relatively few voters are located. That is my story, and I’m sticking to it.

But, in fairness, I have to say I have heard lots of people—including lots of women—in recent days saying, “I just don’t think a woman can beat Trump.” I believe that’s horse pucky, but many do not share my views.

Going forward, I have a modest proposal:


I would suggest that my modest proposal kills four birds with one stone.

two birds

Bird Number One

Warren and Biden would have to negotiate about what progressive policies they can both endorse, notably as to health care. The result of that negotiation would be to give Biden a shove—a much needed shove, IMHO—toward emphasizing economic justice as a basis for his candidacy, along with a return to decency and normality.

Bird Number Two

Bird Number Two is closely related to Bird Number One. Warren would be useful in persuading the left wing of the Democratic Party to vote for the ticket in November, not to just take their marbles and go home.

Bird Number Three

Putting Elizabeth on the ticket would go some way toward assuaging the feelings of those who are very concerned about gender discrimination.

Bird Number Four

Joe Biden surely needs a very strong number two by his side, to shore him up, and to step in if he stumbles. I can’t think of any better candidate than Elizabeth Warren.

But first, as I said before, Joe and Elizabeth would have to get on the same page on economic justice, both as to the substance of their proposals and as to their messaging.