Biden-Warren Sniping Turns Ugly: 'This Is No Way to Get Anything Done'


This should liven things up at the next Democratic debate.

While the Democratic primary contenders have pretty much avoided outright attacks on each other to keep their fire focused on President Donald Trump, former Vice President Joe Biden and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren — two of the heavyweights in a field of featherweights — have taken sniping at each other to a new level.

In an interview published Friday, Warren took a veiled swipe at Biden, ludicrously implying he’s a Republican at heart.

Biden meanwhile, fired back in a social media post nailing Warren as representative of an “elitism” that snubs “working and middle class people.”

Amazing that it takes a radical like Elizabeth Warren to prove a lefty like Joe Biden can be right once in a while.

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The Democratic fracas kicked off with a Warren statement in a Politico piece exploring the potentially devastating effects her health care plan could have on the Democratic prospects in the 2020 election.

(For a hint at the tenor, Politico’s headline was: “‘This is going to cause down-ballot damage’: Warren’s $20 trillion health plan fails to quiet critics.”)

The article included a quote from Biden declaring that Warren’s plan was unnecessary, and that all the country really needs to do is “restore Obamacare.” (I said he was right once in a while, not often.)

Warren’s response was as self-righteous and shrill in the piece as she is on the campaign trail.

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“Democrats are not going to win by repeating Republican talking points and by dusting off the points of view of the giant insurance companies and the giant drug companies who don’t want to see any change in the law that will bite into their profits,” she said.

“If anyone wants to defend keeping those high profits for insurance companies and those high profits for drug companies and not making the top 1 percent pay a fair share in taxes and not making corporations pay a fair share in taxes, then I think they’re running in the wrong presidential primary.”

Zinger! If Joe Biden is running in the wrong primary, that must mean Warren thinks Biden is really a Republican!

Sure, a guy who carried water for President Barack Obama was sympathizing with Obama’s Republican opponents the whole time. A liberal whose public positions on abortion got him into such trouble with a Catholic priest that he was recently denied Communion is actually a closet conservative.

If Warren’s opinion of herself is so high she can’t even find common cause with a dyed-in-the-wool Democrat like Biden, she’s got about zero chance of connecting with the vast mass of Americans who are considerably to Biden’s right on the political spectrum.

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Biden’s response, published Tuesday by the website Medium, tried to posit himself as the voice of reason (not a hard thing to do when dealing with Warren).

Warren’s approach, he wrote, is “representative of an elitism that working and middle class people do not share: ‘We know best; you know nothing’. ‘If you were only as smart as I am you would agree with me.’ This is no way to get anything done,” he wrote.

Biden’s real problem here, though, is that he isn’t just describing Warren with those words. He’s describing the entire Democratic Party — and the Washington establishment as a whole.

Warren is representative of elitism. But so is Biden and the Democrats who passed – without one Republican vote – the disastrous Obamacare law.

The Obama administration that Biden served so faithfully was elitist to its core, dragging the United States into international pacts like the Paris climate agreement and the Iran nuclear deal based almost entirely on the argument that, as Biden might put it, “We know best; you know nothing. If you were only as smart as I am you would agree with me.”

For Elizabeth Warren to call Joe Biden a Republican is beyond inane, even by Democrat standards.

For Joe Biden to call Warren an elitist represents a rare moment of lucidity for the gaffe-prone pol. In short, Biden is absolutely right.

Unfortunately for the former veep,  it’s a smear that could easily apply to the entire political party he’s trying to lead.

As the Democratic Party’s unwieldy field starts to continue to pare itself (goodbye, Beto, it was a blast), with three months yet to go before the Feb. 3 caucuses in Iowa, the internecine attacks are only going to pick up.

So when the Dem contenders take the stage on Nov. 20  at the Tyler Perry Studios complex in Atlanta, a Biden-Warren matchup could liven things up considerably.

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Joe has spent more than 30 years as a reporter, copy editor and metro desk editor in newsrooms in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Florida. He's been with Liftable Media since 2015.
Joe has spent more than 30 years as a reporter, copy editor and metro editor in newsrooms in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Florida. He's been with Liftable Media since 2015. Largely a product of Catholic schools, who discovered Ayn Rand in college, Joe is a lifelong newspaperman who learned enough about the trade to be skeptical of every word ever written. He was also lucky enough to have a job that didn't need a printing press to do it.