Thursday, September 12, 2019

Nevertheless, She Persists

There were two things which stood out to me in the Politico Magazine article detailing the rocky relations between the Obama-Biden White House- including Tim Geithner,  Lawrence Summers and other insiders- and Elizabeth Warren. Alex Thompson notes that Senate Minority Leader Harry

Reid, who appointed Warren to the (TARP) oversight panel and has been an admirer of her presidential run, says he thought Warren clashed so fiercely with Geithner and Summers in part because she understood financial markets well enough that they couldn’t condescend to her.

“One thing about her conversations with Summers and with Geithner, they couldn’t talk over her head,” says Reid, adding that Summers, a former Treasury secretary and president of Harvard University, wasn’t used to that. “I met with Summers many, many times and, frankly, he talked about a lot of things I didn’t quite comprehend. But with her, that wasn’t the case.”

Negotiating with a President who understands the business of business is not Wall Street's idea of a wet dream, nor something the titans of the universe are used to. However, that's only one reason CNBC's Jim Cramer says (beginning at 1:39 below) "I don't know what's going to happen. Look, when you get off the desk and talk to executives, they're more fearful of her winning- look, I've never heard anybody say (i.e., of anyone else) 'look, she's got to be stopped, she's got to be stopped.'"

Two days later, Cramer remarked (at :21) "There are people who say 'how can you put her on- how can you' as if she's some sort of pariah. She's a Senator of the United States of America."

Politico's Thompson quotes one individual working with Warren during the Obama period (but not on her campaign) charging "Obama called the bankers fat cats once and spent seven years feeling bad about it." By contrast, Cramer's colleague maintains Warren is "a very serious, rigorous person... somewhat relentless- strong characteristic for people who achieve things."

While there have been presidents- Obama and Bill Clinton included- who were "smart as a whip," hardly anyone would describe these guys as "relentless."

Thompson quotes also David Axelrod,. President Obama's campaign strategist and adviser, warning "the one thing you need to know about Elizabeth Warren is that you don't get from Norman, Oklahoma, to where she is right now and take the journey she took without a steel spine and indefatigability."

Wall Street executives now know what they've suspected for a long time, and Mitch McConnell learned early in the Trump presidency. Confronted by opposition, the junior senator from Massachusetts is determinedand relentless, and will not back down. No doubt they have reason to consider her a "pariah."

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