Why Wall Street's Angst Over Elizabeth Warren is Unfounded
President Obama's victory is rooted in his narrative on the economy and the middle class -- and so are the victories of other Democratic winners, including Massachusetts Senator-elect Elizabeth Warren. Warren has long been an advocate for working families, but she is best known for promoting greater regulation of the banks and for helping create the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB). Her race, and the grassroots support she garnered, has the same subterranean quality of Obama's 2008 victory: though she outraised all Senate candidates, raking in a monstrous $39 million, the Federal Election Commission's disclosure page tells us that a mere 1.5 percent (about $607,000) of Warren's war chest came from political action committees, most of which are labor or women's rights groups. The vast majority of her support came from tens of thousands of individuals, who all want Warren to give the banks hell.
Warren's victory helps heal America's hangover from 2008-2009, when Lehman Brothers shut its doors and the mortgage crisis reared its head. Even after the financial crisis was under control, Americans saw banks using Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) money to pay executive bonuses while the struggles of the middle class and poor grew. To voters Warren represented the antidote: it was high time to elect someone who will hold the banks to task.
So naturally Warren's victory makes Wall Street nervous.