Monday, April 17, 2017

The Elizabeth Warren Initiative

TO: Interested Parties
FROM: Colin Reed, Executive Director, America Rising PAC
DATE: April 17, 2017
RE: The Elizabeth Warren Initiative
With U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) embarking on a book tour as the soft launch of her 2020 presidential run, America Rising PAC is announcing, “The Elizabeth Warren Initiative” (EWI). 
EWI will have two very clear goals: 
  1. Make Warren’s life difficult during her 2018 Senate re-election contest;
  2. Continue developing the long-term research and communications angles to damage her 2020 prospects. 
Our tactics will include, but are not limited, to:
Building and maintaining a full opposition research profile;
Video tracking;
FOIA/public records program;
Rapid response communications;
Our preliminary lines of messaging fall into four buckets:
  1. Putting 2020 Ambitions Ahead Of Massachusetts: As Sen. Warren strives for ideological left-wing purity, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is paying the price. One glaring example was last year’s “21st Century Cures Act,” a measure pushed by the Obama Administration and supported by every member of the all-Democratic Massachusetts congressional delegation except Warren. The measure contained critical funding for both medical innovation and addiction treatment for the opioid epidemic that has ravaged the Commonwealth. Fellow Democrats and home state editorial boards ripped Warren for her opposition, with the Boston Herald writing, “try to picture Kennedy walking away from an agreement that would benefit both his home state and patients and families … how far we have fallen.”
  2. Falling Short Of The Kennedy Standard: Speaking of Kennedy, during his time in the Senate, his name was attached to more than 300 pieces of legislation that became law. Despite his reputation as a liberal partisan, Kennedy never hesitated to work with Republicans to find common ground. To date, Senator Warren has not been a lead sponsor on any bill signed into law during her four plus years in the Senate.
  3. Left Of The Far Left, But No Appeal In The Middle: Sen. Warren burst onto the national scene in 2011 as the self-described intellectual creator of the Occupy Wall Street protest group that later became the driving force behind the #FeelTheBern movement that hijacked the Democratic Party. Her far-left agenda has endeared her to limousine liberals and academic elites, but has not worn well outside the Acela corridor. As a surrogate in high profile Senate races in 2014 and 2016, Warren was an abject failure. Senate candidates she stumped for in the critical swing states of Ohio, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania all lost. These are states that decided the 2016 presidential election, and will play a key role in 2020. As the titular head of the Democratic Party, EWI will also connect Warren to Senate candidates running in swing states.
  4. The Warren Way: World Class Hypocrisy: From school choice to equal pay to house flipping to her work as a hired corporate attorney: the gambit of issues where Warren says one thing and does another is voluminous. A hallmark of her political career has been the sanctimony of the standards she holds others to while falling well short of those same standards in her own conduct. 
Make no mistake: with the right challenger and a favorable political climate, Sen. Warren’s 2018 re-election is no sure thing. The WBUR poll earlier this year showing nearly half Massachusetts voters believing it’s time for a new senator should have been a wake-up call. So too should have last week’s Morning Consult survey showing Warren as one of the least popular Democratic senators in the country, and with the highest disapproval numbers of any potential 2020 Democrat. 
But Warren has her eyes set on a higher prize. With an eye-popping $9.2 million dollar war chest, including a $5.3 million haul during the first quarter of 2017, Warren will have a bottomless pit of cash to intimidate other would-be presidential hopefuls. She will use her unlimited funds to try and repair her political image, and this book tour is the first start. 
During the summer of 2014, Hillary Clinton also used a highly choreographed book tour as the unofficial start to her campaign, during which she infamously uttered the phrase “dead broke.” One of the lessons we learned from 2016 is that research narratives take time to sink in with voters. For instance, when Clinton left the State Department in early 2013 she had a net approval rating of +33 points, according to Gallup. By Election Day 2016, that number had fallen to -17, a net drop of 50 points. That’s a goal we aim to replicate with Warren.