Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren ended her presidential campaign after failing to gain traction in early voting, yielding to the top Democratic candidates Joe Biden and Senator Bernie Sanders. But since her exit from the race, she has not thrown her political heft behind either top candidate.
Warren crossed hairs with both Sanders and Biden during the months of campaigning, even accusing Sanders of saying a woman could never be president. Since her departure, just days after Super Tuesday voting, voters have been anticipating a candidate endorsement, but so far, she has refused to back anyone.
Sen. @ewarren on why she hasn’t yet endorsed a Democratic presidential candidate: “I think Bernie needs space to decide what he wants to do next.”— The View (@TheView) March 19, 2020
“I’m focused on what we’re going to do next in this crisis around the coronavirus.” https://t.co/wyV5el6v15 pic.twitter.com/HSM6k3oJWn
In a video chat interview with "The View" on Thursday, Warren dodged two different hosts attempting to get a definitive answer from the progressive senator. Sunny Hostin, noting that Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard had finally ended her bid for the Democratic nomination to endorse Joe Biden, asked Warren why she was the only former major candidate to be silent.
"So, actually, I've been focused on this crisis," Warren said with a slight giggle. She went on to say that it wasn't too early to look at the economic fall out due to the virus and hoped to be able to focus on that.
Whoopi Goldberg praised Warren for her dedication to policy but quickly returned to the original line of questioning presented by Hostin.
"Senator Warren, one of the feelings that a lot of people have is that they're uncomfortable because they don't think you have faith in either one of the candidates," Goldberg said. "Can you dispel that for people?"
Warren, seemingly prepared for the line of questioning, graciously brushed Goldberg's concerns aside and pivoted immediately to touting progressive policies as an answer to the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic.
"That's a very good point, and I'd never thought about it that way," Warren said. "This is not a question about not being confident in leadership. My position on this has been clear. I think all of us who ran for president, frankly, would make a much better president than Donald Trump."
But now, she said was the time to focus on passing more legislation that would help Americans economically. Coincidentally, the policies she proposed as pandemic response echoed identical policy proposals she campaigned with during her run for the White House.
"Think what it's like right now for young people paying about $400 a month in student loans," Warren said, attempting to restore interest in her broad proposal to erase college loan debt. "It's a time to forgive those student loans."
Warren also discussed increasing social security and disability payments by $200 per month, a proposal she felt could "increase wealth" for many Americans. Goldberg, however, was not moved by the senator's attempt to move away from the multiple attempts to get her to endorse either Biden or Sanders.
"In order to get people to understand where you're coming from, I think you're going to have to guide people in the right direction...with one of those two candidates," Goldberg said.
Warren also took the time on Thursday to slam the president on social media for his remarks on the rapidly spreading Wuhan coronavirus, criticizing him for his hesitation in wanting to use the recently enacted Defense Production Act. She also chose to blur the word "Chinese" from Trump's quote in order to avoid racial offense to her followers.
President Trump, are your eyes stitched shut? Hospitals need test kits, ventilators, & other medical supplies. That's why the DPA exists. Stop dragging your feet & burying your head & start helping hospitals that are about to be slammed by this pandemic. pic.twitter.com/9bb4Bl05ob— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) March 19, 2020
"President Trump, are your eyes stitched shut?" Warren asked. "Hospitals need test kits, ventilators, & other medical supplies. That's why the DPA exists. Stop dragging your feet & burying your head & start helping hospitals that are about to be slammed by this pandemic."
The president has been clear that the DPA should not be enforced unless absolutely necessary in an effort to avoid compelling Americans into uncomfortable levels of manufacturing, putting a strain on both supply and workforce. The act gives the president great power to control private industry; a power Trump says he wouldn't use until the moment it became imperative to protect the rights of businesses and workers.
The Coronavirus Task Force announced from the White House today that supplies were on the way to hospitals and healthcare providers in great numbers. Vice President Pence said that he confirmed with 3M that 35 million masks had been produced and were available right away.