Elizabeth Warren Still On Joe Biden’s VP List Alongside Three Black Women; Political Scientists Explain Why

Printed from: https://newbostonpost.com/2020/07/01/elizabeth-warren-still-on-joe-bidens-vp-list-alongside-three-black-women-political-scientists-explain-why/

Joe Biden has yet to announce who his running mate will be in 2020, but one candidate whose name keeps coming up is an outlier compared to the rest under consideration.

Biden, the former vice president and presumptive Democratic nominee for president, has already committed to picking a woman as his VP candidate. Now, his list is down to four:  U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-California), U.S. Representative Val Demings (D-Florida), Atlanta Democratic Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, and U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts), according to a recent CNN report.

Yes, they are all Democrats, but one thing separates Warren from the other three: race. The other three women in consideration are black. Warren, on the other hand, is overwhelmingly white.

So if Biden appears to be considering the race of his VP candidate, then why is Warren in consideration? A few political scientists told New Boston Post why it makes sense — regardless of who he ends up picking as his running mate.

Boston College political scientist Dave Hopkins says that just because Warren is on the list, it doesn’t necessarily mean the Biden campaign takes her seriously as a candidate.

“Even if the Biden campaign ultimately intends to choose another candidate for VP, in particular a woman of color, there is a political benefit to keeping Warren on the list of finalists anyway,” Hopkins wrote in an email message. “She has a lot of admirers among the liberal activists of the party, and Biden doesn’t want to alienate them by making it look like he doesn’t deem her worthy of serious consideration.”

Iowa State University political scientist Mack Shelley seconded that. He noted that the people Warren connects with best in the Democratic Party are some of its most diehard supporters — as well as a demographic Democrats want to keep winning.

“I believe that Elizabeth Warren continues to be mentioned in part to attract support for Biden from the progressive wing of the Democratic Party,” Shelley told New Boston Post in an email message. “It also may be functional for Biden to have a woman not of color in the mix to maintain connectivity with key demographics including educated suburban women who have been voting heavily for Democratic candidates in recent election cycles.”

Christina Cliff, a political scientist at Franklin Pierce, offers a different perspective. She says still sees Warren as an actual contender.

“I would argue that Elizabeth Warren is in the mix for a few reasons:  1. If Biden is considered a moderate Democrat, Warren would be considered more liberal (balancing the ticket to broaden the appeal to liberal Democrats, and those that might be thinking third party),” she wrote. “2. She is the most likely of this list to pull in some of the Sanders supporters as she had a similar policy platform to Sanders. 3. While she didn’t do well in the primaries, she was also extremely popular with women, particularly after her takedown of Bloomberg at his first debate, and was considered by many to have the most comprehensive policy plans.”

Cliff added, “Warren arguably meets many of the ‘typical’ check boxes for picking a running mate.  I certainly wouldn’t be surprised if she is chosen.”

Previously, U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota) was a serious VP contender, but she withdrew from consideration on June 18 and encouraged Biden to pick a minority woman amid the death of George Floyd and the ongoing protests and riots in the aftermath. Klobuchar had taken severe criticism for not prosecuting the Minneapolis police officer charged with murdering Floyd on May 25 for previous incidents when she was the elected county attorney for the Minnesota county that includes the city.

Biden plans to announce his running mate before August 1, according to The Washington Post.

The sports betting web site Bovada gives Kamala Harris the most favorable odds to be Biden’s VP. Warren is fourth on the list.