Exploring Elizabeth Warren’s character

Kevin Williamson devotes his latest National Review Online column to a character study of U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a prominent candidate for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

Of course she was attracted to the law. Law school is Grinder HQ, ground zero for ambitious mediocrities, the best practical option for people who aren’t fast enough to work on Wall Street or creative enough to work in Silicon Valley and too lazy to hustle real estate. Law school is the grand entrepôt of political hackery — Chuck Schumer didn’t even bother making a desultory effort at practicing law after finishing up law school; he was running for the New York state legislature before he even passed the bar.

Senator Warren is a seeker after celebrity. She never had much of a legal career (she wrote wills and the like from home) and instead sought the pseudo-celebrity of academia, which offers many attractions: gentle workloads, security, a measure of prestige, and — not least — a stage. Academic life can be very rewarding — Senator Warren and her professor husband earn nearly $1 million a year between them — but that wasn’t enough. Warren became an author of dopey self-help books and an occasional cable-news guest, instructing Lou Dobbs on the tribulations of the middle class. She found a bigger audience in activism, and a bigger one still after securing a very safe seat in the Senate representing Massachusetts, from which comfortable perch she pretends to afflict the comfortable and comfort the afflicted — she’s very comfortable with some of the comfortable, including the big corporate law firms that sponsor her campaigns — as she seeks, ever hungrily, after larger venues.

Mitch Kokai / Senior Political Analyst

Mitch Kokai is senior political analyst for the John Locke Foundation. He joined JLF in December 2005 as director of communications. That followed more than four years as chie...

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