Sen. Elizabeth Warren is withholding her endorsement for president. Is there a lesson here?

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U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren speaking with supporters at a town hall at Centennial High School in Las Vegas, Nevada. February 15, 2020. (photo: Gage Skidmore)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren may be gone from the field of those running for president, but she isn’t forgotten.

Nor has she forgotten the “Bernie Bros” she credits with most of the vitriol directed at her during the campaign, both online and in real-life. Bernie Sanders, Warren maintains, is responsible for the actions of his progressive supporters.

This is likely one of the reasons Warren has yet to direct her endorsement towards any of the remaining candidates in the race; not even in the name of defeating Donald Trump. It isn’t that difficult to understand why Warren may be feeling a bit of justified anger.

Not just on her own behalf, but on behalf of the other female lawmakers and college professors who will come after her; that they, like Warren, will have to work twice as hard to get half as far.

Sexism alone may not have killed the once-promising Warren campaign, but sexism played a part in its demise.

It is the same thing that has Rep. Tulsi Gabbard publicly appealing to the remaining Democratic men in the race to use their clout with party leadership to please get her into the next debate.

Though Gabbard had qualified for the next debate by old DNC rules, new rules have rendered Gabbard ineligible to participate. The next Demcoratic debate will be between Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Vice President Joe Biden.

Sexism is why Mike Bloomberg chose to waste $500 million on a vanity campaign instead of backing Sen. Kamala Harris. For that matter, why wouldn’t a moderate Demcoratic lawmaker like Sen. Amy Klobuchar be the one holding the middle ground in the race for the nomination; she had twice the appeal of Joe Biden and none of his baggage.

Like the other women in the race, Elizabeth Warren has been over-looked, dismissed and ignored from the very beginning.

She has been disdained alternately for being a know-it-all and then again for not knowing enough. She has been cast as a push-over, a schoolmarmy scold, a two-faced friend who turned on Bernie Sanders; too nice, not nice enough.

For the Democratic men in the race, even for former-Republican Mike Bloomberg or still-Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders, it has been “give me a reason, any reason, to like you.”

For the Democratic women in the race, it has been “give me a reason, any reason, to dislike you.”

So instead of any of the well-qualified women, which Democrats all found overly wanting in some way, the Democratic Party is now stuck with Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders.

Which one will Warren back?

Warren may have decided to let the Sanders campaign sweat it out over the weekend, if indeed the Sanders campaign is even salivating over her relatively small number of supporters- many of whom have probably already decided to back Bernie as the most ideologically compatible with Warren.

However, Elizabeth Warren backed Hillary Clinton over Sanders in 2016. Warren voters might not automatically fall to Bernie Sanders, either.

If it is any consolation to Warren, the Democratic establishment’s clear choice of Joe Biden isn’t being billed as a triumph. Biden is being touted as pragmatism, though. Democratic voters don’t exactly love him- in contrast to Bernie Sanders who inspires great loyalty in his many acolytes- but they like Biden well enough.

The Democratic Party has decided Joe Biden is more electable than Elizabeth Warren or Amy Klobuchar, for better or worse. Only time will tell whether party leadership made the right call in going all-in for Joe Biden.

Political prognosticators and members of the media politic, like sports-bet bookies and economists, get it wrong all the time.

In one sentence, the Salt Lake City Tribune admits the journalist class is awful at predictions and was completely wrong about the electability of one Donald Trump. In the next sentence, we are assured by these same authorities that Bernie Sanders is unelectable.

“Barry Goldwater!” they shout, “George McGovern!”

These Democratic powers also seem convinced that Biden, who won in 2008 and 2012, can deliver Democrats the Oval Office, the House Majority and even the Senate Majority. But they are also hinging their hopes on the coronavirus causing an economic slowdown.

Democrats seem so quick to forget history; even their own.

When Republicans ran the safe-bet in 2008, Sen. John McCain- war hero, experienced statesman, former prisoner of war, maverick, - they fully expected him to trounce a no-name community organizer with little political experience and no chance at the presidency.

Barack Obama became the 43rd President of the United States- not John McCain.

Even in declaring Biden the safe electability bet, the Democratic Party is expressing its disdain for the Warren campaign.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren- like Sen. Kamala Harris, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, and Sen. Amy Klobuchar- wowed during the debates. Warren dazzled, she danced circles around Mike Bloomberg, even around Bernie Sanders.

Joe Biden, it must be said, did not wow anyone during the debates. Not in a good way, anyway.

“Democratic insiders know Biden has cognitive decline issues. They joke about it. They don’t care.” — Matt Stoller

“The steadfast insistence on the part of Dems to just pretend this isn’t true and hope it somehow goes away is a staggering exercise in self-delusion.” — Glenn Greenwald

“Joe Biden’s mental decline is self-evident. Biden will lose to Trump, and supporting Biden is irresponsible.” — Carlos Ramirez-Rosa, Chicago Alderman

What will become of Biden once he faces Donald Trump in debate? While Biden’s Democratic opponents went easy on him, Trump will not. While few people have been watching the Democratic debates, a great many more will tune in to see Donald Trump.

And they will have to watch Biden stumble, gaffe and fumble his way through two-hours of public humiliation thinking “this is the best the Demcoratic Party could come up with?”

Biden, and the Democratic powers that allowed him to get this far in the race, can count on the media to keep stories about Joe Biden’s terrible debate performances and cognitive decline out of wide circulation.

But they aren’t reckoning with Trump’s Twitter reach; nor are they calculating how social media users are likely to amplify every Biden embarrassment.

It shouldn’t surprise anyone if Elizabeth Warren, like Tulsi Gabbard, is just too disgusted by the process to give their endorsements just now.

Democratic women expected to have to fight Trump; they reckoned with having to endure Republican criticism and detraction.

Reckoning with the dark underbelly of their own party is enough to make anyone want to wash their hands of the whole affair.

(contributing writer, Brooke Bell)

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