I have previously written about my issues with the "Draft Warren" campaigns, in which people organized in order to try to convince Senator Elizabeth Warren to run for president, despite her repeated statements that she wasn't running and didn't want to run.
In today's Politico, the two people behind the "Run Warren Run" campaign, Ilya Sheyman, executive director of MoveOn.org Political Action, and Charles Chamberlain, executive director of Democracy for America, announce they're suspending the "Run Warren Run" campaign, but explain they're "still declaring victory."
Among their listed achievements is this: "When Warren spoke, we made sure people listened. Even more than usual."
We worked to amplify her voice wherever and whenever possible—not just among Hill reporters covering the minutia of legislative debates, but on the nation's biggest stage. By raising the possibility of a Warren run for the presidency, we elevated the significance of her words and actions.This, without a trace of irony. Because one of the central tenets of their campaign was not listening to Elizabeth Warren. Every time she said she wasn't running, had no plans to run, had no desire to run, was not running, no means no, they ignored her. And they encouraged everyone else to ignore her, too.
They may have "elevated the significance of her words and actions" when it came to policy, but they diminished the significance of her words and actions when it came to her personal agency.
What they "achieved" was communicating in yet one more very visible way that women don't, or shouldn't, have ownership of their own choices. That if women don't behave in the way we want them to on demand, a public campaign to coerce them into conforming to our will, with little regard for their own, is a legitimate strategy.
We don't begrudge Warren for not choosing to climb that ladder.How magnanimous.