Elizabeth Warren’s Evasions: Liner Notes

I have a new column up at The Federalist today, “Elizabeth Warren May Have Plans, But She Does Not Want to Discuss Them On Television.” I think most of the traffic today will be going to dissecting the new book attacking Justice Kavanaugh, but Sen. Warren seems like a potentially larger problem in the medium term.

The column is a partial analysis and fact-check of Warren’s debate performance last week, which was effective in attracting Democrats and ineffective in being candid. Plenty got left out for space because her evasions pervaded virtually every answer she gave.

I was particularly miffed I had to cut a discussion of her answer on pulling out of Afghanistan without any peace agreement, because she had the gall to accuse military commanders of not being able to define “winning” in Afghanistan, while having no specifics about pulling out, let alone the possible consequences of doing so without any agreement. Obama’s withdrawal from Iraq without a Status of Forces agreement was a major contributor to the rise of ISIS (and in turn, ISIS-inspired domestic terror), underscoring that even those who support withdrawal (which is a reasonable position) may pay a political price later if it’s done recklessly. Warren also spoke of the need to get our allies involved, as if almost half of the NATO forces in Afghanistan do not come from our allies.

There is also a larger tension between her general non-interventionism and her nationalist trade policies on the one hand and and her belief that we’re going to solve our illegal immigration policies by re-instituting the rule of law in countries like Venezuela on the other. Her most consistent position may be that problems she does not want to address are to be addressed by others.

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