The Elizabeth Warren Trial Balloon

If you’re going to float her name, you’ve got to seriously consider her.

It’s hard to avoid the perception that Elizabeth Warren’s name is being given an aggressive test drive as Hillary Clinton’s potential running mate. Some opponents of the idea were quick to leap out of the weeds, like former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, who says that Warren is “not in any way, shape, or form ready to be commander-in-chief.” Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, on the other hand, seems decidedly enthusiastic about the idea.

I’ve written tepidly about the idea in the past, but I think Warren would be the most electrifying possible pick and would do a lot to unite the Clinton and Sanders wings of the party.

What I think would be a bad idea is to let the idea float out there and then not deliver on it.

The perception that Clinton seriously considered Warren but then rejected her would not be helpful for party unity. What reason would be given for passing on someone who is so clearly beloved by the base?

That a two-woman ticket is too much? That there’s something wrong with Warren? That, as Rendell says, she’s not good enough?

I have to think that there’s a real shot of this happening. Either that, or this is a misguided trial balloon.

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Martin Longman

Martin Longman is the web editor for the Washington Monthly. See all his writing at