The vocal consumer advocate will run against Scott Brown in the 2012 election
Consumer advocate and Democrat Elizabeth Warren will enter the Massachusetts Senate primary for a shot at challenging incumbent Republican Scott Brown for his seat.
Warren will formally declare she’s running on Wednesday, Kyle Sullivan, a Warren spokesman, said. She plans to greet commuters in Boston and make other stops during the day across the state.
“The pressures on middle-class families are worse than ever, but it is the big corporations that get their way in Washington,” Warren said in a statement released Tuesday. “I want to change that. I will work my heart out to earn the trust of the people of Massachusetts.”
Democrats have been seeking a major challenger for the seat long held by the late Sen. Edward Kennedy. Democrats hoping to keep their narrow Senate majority have made Brown a top target in the blue state. Kennedy’s former seat has special significance for Massachusetts Democrats. Warren will join a crowded primary field but was heavily courted to join the race.
Warren is a Harvard Law professor who was tapped by President Barack Obama last year to set up a new consumer protection agency, but congressional Republicans opposed her becoming the director. She worked to set up the agency before returning to Massachusetts this summer.
Supporters say her image as a crusader against well-heeled Wall Street interests and her national profile will give her candidacy muscle, though she’s never run for political office.
Warren, 62, is a favorite of liberals and consumer groups, but some Democrats, including Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, have voiced skepticism about how strong a candidate she will be, given her lack of political experience.
Republicans have already branded Warren as a liberal academic whose Harvard ties put her out of touch with the concerns of working families. They’ve also mocked her as an outsider whose roots are in Oklahoma, not Massachusetts.
Democratic leaders, however, said her national profile would help her raise the money needed to topple Brown, who has more than $10 million in his campaign account. Democrats contend that while Brown has strong ties to Wall Street and other powerful financial interests, Warren’s long career as a consumer advocate offers a striking contrast for voters who care deeply about jobs and the ailing economy.
A recent Boston Globe poll showed Brown as the most popular major politician in the traditionally Democratic state. Brown shocked the political establishment by beating Martha Coakley in last year’s special election to succeed Kennedy. He was a little-known state senator who cast himself as a moderate, an average guy with his trademark barn coat and pickup truck, even once posing as a Cosmopolitan magazine centerfold.
Coakley, the state’s attorney general, was widely seen as an early favorite, but she ran a lackluster race. She famously mocked Brown for greeting voters outside Boston’s Fenway Park in freezing weather, a gaffe that cost votes because she was seen as taking the race for granted.
Warren has spent the past several weeks meeting with party activists and voters across the state as part of what she called a listening tour. She’s already gotten a boost from EMILY’s List, which raises money for female Democratic candidates. The Progressive Change Campaign Committee, a national liberal group, has been raising money and seeking campaign volunteers for Warren for weeks.
Other Democrats already announced include Swetti Warren, no relation to the consumer advocate, the first-term mayor of the affluent Boston suburb of Newton and the state’s first popularly elected black mayor; City Year youth program co-founder Alan Khazei; immigration attorney Marisa DeFranco, state Rep. Tom Conroy and Robert Massie, who unsuccessfully ran for lieutenant governor.
More Related Stories
- Must-see morning clip: Barackalypse Now
- Okla. tornado survivor reunited with dog trapped in rubble live on camera
- Is Pope Francis an exorcist?
- Oklahoma tornado death count at least 91
- Frantic parents search for children in tornado's wake
- Crews dig through rubble after deadly tornado
- 51 killed in massive Oklahoma tornado
- Don't cry climate-change wolf
- Record tornado devastates Oklahoma
- Limbaugh: No one willing to impeach the first black president
- Tornado reduces Oklahoma City suburb to rubble
- AP: Toll at least 37 dead in Okla. tornado
- Entire Midwest on tornado warning
- Oregon senator proposes appeal to Monsanto Protection Act
- Supreme Court to rule on prayer at government meetings
- Beltway scandal machine breaks, knows nothing about America
- Gitmo hunger striker launches Twitter campaign
- "Hero" cop, honored by Obama, accused of double rape
- Father of gay high school student arrested for dating classmate speaks out
- Pentagon adviser pushed Anthrax drug, which his firm produced
- Conservatives A-OK with closeted Boy Scouts
Featured Slide Shows
The week in 10 picsclose X
- 1 of 11
Lisa Montgomery embraces her nephew Thursday after a tornado tore apart her home in Cleburne, Texas. The twister killed six people and destroyed entire swaths of the North Texas town.
Credit: AP/LM Otero
Jack McMahon, the defense attorney for abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell, speaks outside the Criminal Justice Center in Philadelphia Tuesday. His client was convicted of killing three babies in his clinic, and will serve multiple life sentences.
Credit: AP/Matt Rourke
A photo taken Monday captures Vice President Joe Biden's response to a Milwaukee second-grader's innovative proposal to end America's epidemic of gun violence. This guy!
Credit: AP/Jenny Aicher
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., flanked by a grouper-eyed Michele Bachmann, addresses the IRS' admission that it targeted Tea Party groups in advance of the 2012 election. In an op-ed for CNN Thursday, the Kentucky senator slammed the president for his faux outrage.
Credit: AP/Molly Riley
Ousted IRS chief Steven Miller is sworn in on Capitol Hill Friday. Miller testified before the House Ways and Means Committee on the extra scrutiny the agency gave conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status.
Credit: AP/J. Scott Applewhite
Attorney General Eric Holder pauses as he testifies on Capitol Hill before the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday. Holder is under fire, among other things, for the Justice Department's gathering of phone records at the Associated Press.
Credit: AP/Carolyn Kaster
O.J. Simpson sits during an evidentiary hearing at Clark County District Court in Las Vegas, Nev., Thursday. Simpson, who is currently serving a nine-to-33-year sentence in state prison for armed robbery and kidnapping, is using a writ of habeas corpus to seek a new trial.
Credit: AP/Las Vegas Review-Journal/Jeff Scheid
Major Tom to ground control: On Sunday astronaut Chris Hadfield recorded the first music video from space, a cover of David Bowie's "Space Oddity."
Credit: AP/NASA/Chris Hadfield
When it rains it pours. President Barack Obama speaks during a news conference Thursday with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, inexplicably inspiring an #umbrellagate Twitter meme.
Credit: AP/Jacquelyn Martin
A smoke plume rises high above a road block at the intersection of County A and Ross Road east of Solon Springs, Wis., Tuesday. No injuries were reported, but the the wildfire caused evacuations across northwestern Wisconsin.
Credit: AP/The Duluth News-Tribune/Clint Austin
Recent Slide Shows
- 1 of 11