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Elizabeth Warren: Hollywood Hypocrite or The People’s Candidate?

Kudos to the Boston Herald for bringing these unsurprising revelations to light:

If you’re looking to catch the latest Hollywood summer blockbuster, save your 10 bucks and just look through Elizabeth Warren’s donor list.

From Charlize Theron and Reese Witherspoon to Massachusetts’ pretty boy power couple Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, Hollywood is banking heavily on Warren’s Democratic Senate campaign, the latest financial disclosure reports show.

The Harvard Law professor says she’s running on behalf of the “hammered” middle class but she’s also clearly the darling of the privileged rich and famous.

Damon and his wife, Luciana, gave a total of $10,000 to Warren, while Affleck and his spouse, actress Jennifer Garner, chipped in another $10,000, part of an outpouring of celebrity support during the past three months.

Other $5,000 donors to Warren included actress Susan Sarandon, Newton native John Krasinski of “The Office,” Zach Braff, formerly of “Scrubs,” and mega-movie star Edward Norton, while former “Spider-Man” Tobey Maguire contributed $2,500. Other A-list actors who gave to Warren include Sally Field, Kyra Sedgwick, Kate Capshaw and Heather Anne Thomas, the blond bombshell who starred in the 1980s hit TV show, “The Fall Guy.”


According to the article, 60 percent of Elizabeth Warren’s campaign contributions came from out of state last quarter. What’s more, she reportedly raised $8.5 million (about twice as much as Senator Scott Brown) with a substantial portion of that money coming from -- you guessed it! -- California.


I imagine it’s rather difficult for Elizabeth Warren to argue convincingly that she represents the interests and values of the American middle class, especially when Hollywood celebrities are in large part funding her senatorial campaign. (Her net worth, too, is estimated at nearly $15 million -- yet she claims she's not a "wealthy individual.") Interestingly, the Warren camp has countered charges of elitism and hypocrisy by classifying her opponent as a nefarious “Wall Street Republican.” She argues that while Senator Brown did in fact cast the crucial vote in favor of the controversial Dodd-Frank Financial regulation bill -- one of only three GOP Senators to do so -- he nonetheless worked surreptitiously behind-the-scenes to weaken the legislation. Team Brown vehemently denied these allegations, of course, accusing Elizabeth Warren of fabricating the Senator’s record in order to score cheap political points. That being said, I suspect Scott Brown is going to have a much harder time defending his legislative record (given Team Warren remarkable fundraising haul) than previously expected.

Incidentally, at a time when many Americans believe Washington is utterly broken -- and want to see lawmakers from both major parties working together -- why would the Massachusetts electorate want to replace the second most bipartisan Senator in the Upper Chamber with, say, a liberal Democrat who believes (as does the President of the United States) that entrepreneurial success stems not from the sacrifice and hard work of individuals, but from the generosity and resourcefulness of the state? This alone suggests Elizabeth Warren is yet another progressive ideologue running for political office, a candidate who -- as George F. Will pointed out last year -- has a deeply distorted understanding of the social contract. (Guy touched on this earlier today). Sure, Scott Brown is by no means a perfect candidate -- nor a bona fide conservative, for that matter -- but there’s a reason why Bay State Republicans and Democrats are lining up to endorse him. The legislation he’s championed on behalf of veterans, small businesses, and the New England fishing industry, to name a few examples, has earned him widespread bipartisan acclaim. And his willingness to work with President Obama and his Democratic supporters in Congress (for better or worse) is one of his strengths as a Massachusetts Senate candidate. In short, I don’t believe electing Elizabeth Warren to the federal legislature will, by any stretch of the imagination, bridge the partisan gridlock in Washington; in fact, I think it will have precisely the opposite effect.


I’ll leave you with this: An old Team Brown attack ad demonstrating why Elizabeth Warren’s ties to the Hollywood glitterati could pose, um, problematic.

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