You know, I'm beginning to suspect this person may have an issue with the truth, when it comes to her biographical narrative. In case you're just joining this in-progress collapse of an apparent fable from Elizabeth Warren, read this post and catch up. In short, for years, Warren told various iterations of stories about how and why she left a teaching job in 1979. Lately, including during a recent Democratic debate, she's been claiming that she was effectively fired for being visibly pregnant -- a supposed victim of an antediluvian system, the existence of which underscored the need for progressive, non-sexist policies. What a fitting and perfect anecdote for a politician in the mold of...Elizabeth Warren. But in previous recapitulations of the same scenario, prior to entering politics, her version of events was strikingly different:
Here's the video of that 2007 interview, with the relevant interview starting around the six minute mark:
She said that she was working at the school, but wasn't sure if her career path was working out logistically. She then changed course, later growing 'restless' as a stay-at-home mom. Nothing about getting fired for discriminatory reasons. Other pre-2014 accounts of this period in her life made no mention of a job termination based on her pregnancy. Then things changed. She started to inject a new detail with political resonance into the story, culminating with this claim on a Democratic debate stage last month:
I made it as a special needs teacher. I still remember that first year as a special needs teacher. I could tell you what those babies looked like. I had 4- to 6-year-olds. But at the end of that first year, I was visibly pregnant. And back in the day, that meant that the principal said to me — wished me luck and hired someone else for the job.
The Riverdale Board of Education approved a second-year teaching contract for a young Elizabeth Warren, documents show, contradicting the Democratic presidential candidate’s repeated claims that she was asked not to return to teaching after a single year because she was “visibly pregnant.” Minutes of an April 21, 1971, Riverdale Board of Education meeting obtained by the Washington Free Beacon show that the board voted unanimously on a motion to extend Warren a “2nd year” contract for a two-days-per-week teaching job. That job is similar to the one she held the previous year, her first year of teaching. Minutes from a board meeting held two months later, on June 16, 1971, indicate that Warren’s resignation was “accepted with regret.”
Click through to see the original documents, the contents of which have been further corroborated with contemporaneous press reports. "Warren’s claim that she was dismissed after her first year of teaching because she was pregnant has become a cornerstone of her stump speeches," the piece notes. "She has used it to both explain her jump from teaching into the legal world as well as to showcase the difficulties that women face in the workplace." Seemingly caught red-handed in a fib, likely fashioned or imagined to boost her progressive/populist cred, Warren is doubling down:
NEWS: @ewarren tells me she stands by her trail story about being pushed out of her first teaching job because of pregnancy, despite questions about the story's consistency & other records @CBSNews https://t.co/rosegH24k4— Zak Hudak (@cbszak) October 8, 2019
This was 1971, years before Congress outlawed pregnancy discrimination—but we know it still happens in subtle and not-so-subtle ways. We can fight back by telling our stories. I tell mine on the campaign trail, and I hope to hear yours.— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) October 8, 2019
How does one "stand by" a story that does not match empirical, historical records? By being shameless and shifty. She qualifies in spades. Will reporters follow-up with specific questions on this, or will her repeated assertion be good enough (for what it's worth, Joe Biden is also attempting the exact same approach on this issue)? Will she ever get a few simple drill-down questions on her Native American fiasco? I'll leave you with a left-leaning political analyst expressing puzzlement over how this story is only making real waves within the conservative media and among the Bernie crowd. What could possibly explain this, aside from the mainstream news media's giant girl crush on a politician who represents their platonic ideal of what a president should be?
I don't know this is a particularly serious scandal for Warren—maybe it's something that just requirers a clear explanation from her campaign—but it's interesting that it's circulating on both conservative Twitter and Bernie Twitter but getting almost no mainstream pickup. https://t.co/z7cNzwA8KX— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) October 7, 2019
Relatedly, it is ludicrous that the angle SNL has taken on Warren is that she's just too honest, goshdarnit. They're leaving tons of killer joke on the cutting room floor, but sometimes clapter is more important than laughter in comedy in These Times.