Hillary Clinton: “Name one time I changed due to Wall Street money.” Elizabeth Warren: OK, allow me.|
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had a mixed reception for her performance during the debates. Some respected her aggressive debate tactics, whereas others pointed to her touting an endorsement from Henry Kissinger as a sign that she is not, and never has been, a true progressive — a term which became the unlikely center of discussion and heated argument.
However, there was one moment in which Clinton made a challenge to her detractors. She rallied against her label of “establishment,” claiming that the title is misused on her, and further claimed that her ties to Wall Street are a non-issue, alleging that she has never changed a vote as a result of campaign contributions or other financial influence. “Name one time I changed due to Wall Street money,” she challenged.
Unfortunately for her, there is already a record of quite possibly the most well-respected progressive detailing exactly that scenario.
Back in 2004, Elizabeth Warren sat with Bill Moyers to discuss a bankruptcy regulation bill that was first championed, then opposed by Clinton after she spoke with lobbyists. (This video recaps Clinton’s debate remarks. To start with the Warren interview, skip to 1:04.)
Essentially, the credit companies wanted to restrict the ability of American citizens to claim bankruptcy, thereby allowing the credit companies to continue reaping profits from the financially destitute, many of whom would have had no recourse should the bill have passed.
Elizabeth Warren explains how as First Lady, Clinton sat with Warren and afterwards labored to have her husband, President Bill Clinton, veto the bill. President Clinton did so, and Hillary Clinton claimed credit for this action in her autobiography.
Then, a few years later when Hillary Clinton had just become a senator, the bankruptcy bill returned, causing Warren to opine that the bill was “like a vampire — it will not die.” This time, however, Hillary Clinton voted in favor of what was essentially the exact same bill she had lobbied against.
Warren contrasted Clinton’s time as First Lady with her newfound role as a senator, saying “As Senator Clinton, the pressures are very different.”
Warren summed up the situation succinctly at the end: “She has taken money from [the credit companies], and more to the point, she worries about them as a constituency.”
Furthermore, judging from a new Quinnipiac poll that shows her national lead dropping to just 2%, it seems as though Clinton’s performance at the debate was not as rousing as she would have hoped.
Interestingly, Elizabeth Warren recently defended Bernie Sanders against accusations by Lloyd Blankfein, the CEO of Goldman Sachs. Warren’s own policies also match up with the Vermont senator’s, causing many to call for Warren to join Sanders as a Vice Presidential candidate if he wins the nomination.
Senator Warren has not yet officially endorsed a candidate in the Democratic primary contest.