OnTheIssuesLogo

Elizabeth Warren on Government Reform

Massachusetts Senator; head of CFPB

 


Constitutional Amendment to protect the right to vote

Warren says that "we need a constitutional amendment that protects the right to vote for every American citizen and to make sure that vote gets counted," is not the only presidential contender going big on democracy issues. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is backing an amendment to "abolish the Electoral College" introduced by Senator Brian Schatz, while Senators Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, and Bernie Sanders have signaled their willingness to address the Electoral College's anti-democratic impact, as have former representative Beto O'Rourke and former housing secretary Juli n Castro. Possible presidential contender Pete Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, says: "The Electoral College needs to go, because it's made our society less and less democratic." Buttigieg sees that move as part of a democracy agenda that includes action on Citizens United. Sanders has already proposed amendments to overturn Citizens United, which he decries as "one of the most disastrous decisions in history."
Source: The Nation, "Electoral College," on 2020 Democratic primary , Apr 22, 2019

Fight voter suppression; abolish Electoral College

We need a constitutional amendment that protects the right to vote for every American citizen and to make sure that vote gets counted. We need to put some federal muscle behind that. We need to repeal every one of the voter suppression laws that is out there right now. My view is that every vote matters. And the way we can make that happen is that we can have national voting. And that means get rid of the Electoral College and everybody counts. Everybody ought to have to come and ask for your vote.
Source: CNN Town Hall on 2020 Democratic presidential primary , Mar 18, 2019

Supports a lifetime ban on officials becoming lobbyists

Warren calls the Anti-Corruption and Public Integrity Act: a frontal assault on lobbying, including a lifetime prohibition that would prevent federal officeholders (including the president, members of Congress, and Cabinet secretaries) from ever becoming paid influence peddlers. Her argument is that lobbying undermines the functioning of markets, by permitting corporations to exert outsize control over the regulatory state and use government to squash competitors.
Source: The Atlantic, "Capitalism," on 2020 presidential hopefuls , Aug 28, 2018

Electing judges is a slippery slope to judges for sale

Judges don't run for office--or at least federal judges don't run for office. But some state judges have to run for reelection every few years, and as soon as they start soliciting and accepting campaign contributions, many of them cozy up to big-time corporate contributors. Welcome to the slippery slope. But even when judges don't run for office, the rich and powerful are still sniffling around, looking for a way to influence the outcome of legal disputes.

The reason is pretty simple: even if an industry loses a battle to get a law written exactly the way it wanted--the industry can try to have the new law or regulation overturned in court. For those with plenty of money to spend, the courts can provide a second bite of the apple. Don't like a new rule issued by a regulator who oversees your industry? Bring a lawsuit, and maybe a judge will knock it out. Don't like the outcome of a court case? Fight to overturn it and maybe a higher court will overrule the first court.

Source: This Fight is Our Fight, by Sen. Elizabeth Warren, p. 202-5 , Apr 18, 2017

OpEd: Bullies regulated companies into donation disclosure

A group called "Third Way" criticized Warren. Warren apparently suspected that Third Way's criticism of her was funded by banks. So she wrote a letter to bank CEOs demanding they disclose which political groups they're funding. Warren sits on the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs. She's basically telling the entities whose livelihood her committee controls to stop criticizing her. This is bullying--and it's the best argument for allowing companies and individuals to anonymously criticize politicians.
Source: Quotable Elizabeth Warren, by Frank Marshall, p.195 , Nov 18, 2014

It's THEIR money & power against OUR voices & votes

Q: You say the system is rigged to help the rich people and the big banks.

SEN. WARREN. Yeah.

Q: So what is your solution?

WARREN: Washington works for anyone who can hire an army of lobbyists and lawyers. It just doesn't work for regular families. They've got the concentration of money and power that makes sure that every rule works for those who are rich. What we have on the other side, is we've only got two things. We've got our voices and we've got our votes. And we've got to make sure we get heard. That's the only way we ever get a level playing field.

Q: Is your fight with President Obama or is it with the Republicans?

WARREN: I have had very strong and frankly, pretty public, disagreements with both the Bush administration and with the current administration particularly during the financial bailout over the treatment of the biggest banks. My view was there was too much--and still is--too much of tilting the playing field in their favor.

Source: Face the Nation 2014 interview: 2016 presidential hopefuls , May 11, 2014

Instead of voter suppression, do everything to help register

MA (along with many other states) had taken some heat for not following a federal law designed to make it easier for people to register to vote. The National Voter Registration Act requires states to offer people the chance to register to vote when they get a driver's license, which is why the law is usually called "Motor Voter." Seems sensible, and that part of the law was working pretty well. But since not everyone gets a driver's license--especially the disabled, elderly, and urban poor--the same law required states to invite people to register to vote when they applied for social services, such as veteran's benefits or food stamps. That's where MA had dropped the ball.

[During the 2012 election], MA was finally mailing out half a million voter registration cards. This issue is a direct shot at democracy. In many states, the Republicans have made voter suppression a regular part of their arsenal, chipping away at early voting. African American voting, student voting, you-name-it voting.

Source: A Fighting Chance, by Elizabeth Warren, p.251-2 , Apr 22, 2014

Overcome Wall Street's lobbyists & Congress' dirty tricks

To overcome Wall Street's armies of lobbyists and make sure everyone follows the law, we must take some key steps: Congress must stop the late-night budget tricks designed to weaken agencies responsible for enforcing the laws.
Source: 2012 Senate campaign website, elizabethwarren.com , Dec 10, 2011

Congress must represent the people and be held accountable

Congress is about to write the rules of our economic system that will guide us for the next 50 years. If they get it right we're good. If they get it wrong, the country we knew will be gone. The people need to be on their representatives in Congress & Senate. This is democracy and if we the people don't insist that those in Washington represent us then they'll go back to the same rules that benefit the large financial institutions. And frankly at that point, we're all just working for the big banks.
Source: YouTube: NWO Economics Series, video BZWY4LJ789Y , Apr 1, 2010

Matching fund for small donors, with debate requirements.

Warren signed Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act

Congressional Summary:Fair Elections Now Act--Amends 1971 FECA with respect to:

Statement of support for corresponding Senate bill: (Sunlight Foundation) Now we bring you the Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act, a bill that should probably be the least controversial of all. S. 375 would simply require senators and Senate candidates to file their public campaign finance disclosure reports electronically with the Federal Election Commission, the way House candidates and presidential candidates have been filing for over a decade. A version of the bill has been introduced during every congress starting in 2003 (!) yet it has been blocked repeatedly, a victim of political football.

Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., has introduced the most recent version, which would ensure that paper Senate campaign finance reports are a thing of the past. But even with 50 bipartisan cosponsors, the bill faces an uphill battle. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky, has repeatedly prevented the bill from coming to the Senate floor. We won't be deterred--as long as McConnell continues to block the bill, we'll continue to highlight that his intransigence results in delayed disclosure of vital, public campaign finance information, not to mention wasting $500,000 in taxpayer money annually. Eventually, we'll win.

Source: S375/H.R.269 14_S375 on Feb 25, 2013

Statehood for the District of Columbia.

Warren co-sponsored H.R.317

Congressional Summary: Sets forth procedures for admission into the United States of the state of New Columbia.

Opponents reasons for voting NAY: (DCist.com, Sept. 2014): The Argument Against: Congress does not have the authority to grant statehood to D.C.; the 23rd amendment, which gave D.C. three electoral votes, would have to be repealed before statehood was granted. Washington is a wholly urban, one-industry town, dependent on the federal government far in excess of any other state. Moreover, with Congress no longer having authority over New Columbia but dependent on it, New Columbia could exert influence on the federal government far in excess of any other state.

Supporters reasons for voting YEA: [Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-DC; the District of Columbia has one representative to Congress and no Senators; Rep. Holmes can introduce bills but her vote does not count]: This 51st state would have no jurisdiction over the federal territory or enclave that now consists of the Washington that Members of Congress and visitors associate with the capital of our country. Those would remain under federal jurisdiction. The New Columbia Admission Act was the first bill I introduced in 1991. Statehood is the only alternative for the citizens of the District of Columbia. To be content with less than statehood is to concede the equality of citizenship that is the birthright of our residents as citizens of the United States.

Source: New Columbia Admission Act 15_H317 on Jan 13, 2015

Public financing of federal campaigns by voter vouchers.

Warren co-sponsored H.R.20 & S.366

Congressional Summary:<

Supporters reasons for voting YEA:Rep. Sarbanes: Big money warps Congress' priorities and erodes the public's trust in government. This bold new legislation returns voice and power back to the American people:

  1. Empower everyday citizens to fuel Congressional campaigns by providing a My Voice Tax Credit.
  2. Amplify the voices of everyday Americans through a 6-to-1 match.
  3. Prevent Super PACs from drowning out small donor-backed candidates.

Opponents reasons for voting NAY:(Bill Moyers, Feb. 19, 2015): This citizen engagement strategy, particularly when used to court small donors, is not without its critics. Small donors, at least in the current system, often tend to be political ideologues. That trend leaves many asking: won't moving to small donors just empower extremists? Sarbanes counters, if Congress changes the political fundraising rules, they will also change the calculus for "the rational small donor who right now isn't going to give $25 because they've figured out that it's not going to matter." The prospect of a 6-to-1 match might very well impact how those less ideologically extreme potential donors think about political giving.

Source: Government By the People Act 15_S366 on Feb 4, 2015

Automatic voter registration for all citizens.

Warren co-sponsored H.R.12 & S.1088

Congressional Summary:

Supporters reasons for voting YEA: (BrennanCenter.org): Too many Americans go to vote on Election Day only to find their names are not on the voter rolls--often, wrongly deleted. The US is on the verge of a new paradigm for registering voters: automatic, permanent registration of eligible voters, which would add up to 50 million eligible voters to the rolls.

Opponents reasons for voting NAY: (Gov. Christie's veto message on the "Democracy Act", Nov. 2015): Christie called a provision establishing automatic voter registration that requires New Jerseyan to opt out a "government-knows-best, backwards approach that would inconvenience citizens and waste government resources for no justifiable reason." Automatic voter registration would have added 1.6 million people to the state's voter rolls.

Source: Voter Empowerment Act 15-S1088 on Mar 19, 2015

Other candidates on Government Reform: Elizabeth Warren on other issues:
2020 Presidential Democratic Primary Candidates:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Larry Hogan (D-MD)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 GOP and Independent Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (Libertarian-MI)
Howie Hawkins (Green-NY)
Gov.John Kasich (R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence (R-IN)
CEO Howard Schultz (I-WA)
Pres.Donald Trump (R-NY)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
V.C.Arvin Vohra (Libertarian-MD)
Gov.Bill Weld (R-MA&L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Candidates:
State Rep.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Abortion
Budget/Economy
Civil Rights
Corporations
Crime
Drugs
Education
Energy/Oil
Environment
Families/Children
Foreign Policy
Free Trade
Govt. Reform
Gun Control
Health Care
Homeland Security
Immigration
Infrastructure/Technology
Jobs
Principles/Values
Social Security
Tax Reform
War/Iraq/Mideast
Welfare/Poverty

About Elizabeth Warren:
Profile
AmericansElect quiz
MyOcracy quiz
Wikipedia
Ballotpedia
Search for...





Page last updated: Jun 04, 2019