01 May

Elizabeth Warren vs. Hillary Clinton (2004)


The McGlynn

Elizabeth Warren vs. Hillary Clinton (2004)

In the late 1990s, Congress was set to pass a bill that would make it much harder for working-class Americans to alleviate their debt by claiming bankruptcy. Banks and credit card companies had been pushing hard for the bill.

At the time, now-Senator Elizabeth Warren wrote an op-ed opposing the legislation, arguing the bill would disproportionately hurt single mothers. The first lady, Hillary Clinton, apparently read the piece, because Warren got a call from the White House asking if she’d meet with Clinton to discuss the bill.

After their conversation, Clinton got up and said, “Professor Warren, we’ve got to stop that awful bill.” And stop the bill they did. The bankruptcy bill was the last one to cross President Bill Clinton’s desk, and he vetoed it. (On the campaign trail for President in 2007, Hillary Clinton used the bill as evidence that she “fought the banks.”)

But what Hillary Clinton didn’t say was, when she joined the Senate in 2001, and when the bankruptcy bill came up again, Clinton the Senator did what Clinton the first lady opposed — she voted for it.

Do we really want a pro-corporate flip-flopper running our country? Do we really want the plutocrats and oligarchs to have even more control over our democracy and daily lives? When the GOP talks about “freedom”, they exclude the “economic freedom” that millions of working Americans lack, and who are struggling paycheck-to-paycheck just to get by on. What about their right to earn a real living wage, so that they’d have the freedom to live better lives and pursuit their happiness?

Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders in 2016

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