The one moment that shows why Elizabeth Warren is the Democrats' top debater
Earlier I wrote about why Elizabeth Warren was our best-bet debater against Donald Trump, and why it mattered. Now I’m going to show the one clip that proves it once and for all.
Remember, Mike Bloomberg was the perfect stand-in for Donald Trump: a morally corrupt billionaire oligarch. In the clip below, we get to see how several Democrats on the stage reacted to his Trumpian refusal to release his tax returns:
The transcript is as follows:
BLOOMBERG: Fortunately, I make a lot of money, and we do business all around the world. And we are preparing it. The number of pages will probably be in the thousands of pages. I can't go to TurboTax. But I put out my tax return every year for 12 years in City Hall. We will put out this one. It tells everybody everything they need to know about every investment that I make and where the money goes.
And the biggest item is all the money I give away. And we list that, every single donation I make. And you can get that from our foundation any time you want.
JACKSON: Senator Klobuchar?
KLOBUCHAR: Okay, yeah, I'm just looking at my husband in the front row that has to, like, do our taxes all the time. We probably could go to TurboTax.
And the point of this is, I believe in transparency. I had a physical, by the way. It came out well. We might all be surprised if my blood pressure is lower than Mayor Pete's. That might really shock everyone out there. And I think you should release your records from your physical.
Secondly, when it comes to tax returns, everyone up here has released their tax returns, Mayor. I think—and it is a major issue, because the president of the United States has been hiding behind his tax returns, even when courts order him to come forward with those tax returns.
And I think—I don't care how much money anyone has. I think it's great you've got a lot of money. But I think you've got to come forward with your tax returns.
JACKSON: Senator, I want to get to you in a second. Mayor Bloomberg, quick response to Senator Klobuchar?
BLOOMBERG: We’re releasing them. They'll be out in a few weeks. And that's just as fast as I can do it. Remember, I only entered into this race 10 weeks ago. All of my associates here have been at this for a couple of years.
BUTTIGIEG: That's right, we have. Engaging with voters and humbling ourselves to the backyards and diners.
JACKSON: Let me ask about something else, Mr. Mayor, because, Mayor Bloomberg—let me ask about something else.
WARREN: ... 10 weeks ago, pay overtime, and get it done.
Amy Klobuchar responds to Bloomberg’s ridiculous assertions that he hasn’t had time to gather his tax returns with a long soliloquy about transparency. She’s right, it’s okay. (The random side-dig at Pete Buttigieg, not so much ... that was just weird and out of place.)
Buttigieg chimes in with a “you're elitist, while we are the salt of the earth” response, which is also fine. It’s certainly true!
But Warren pulls an Arya Stark—takes out a dagger and quickly sticks it deep. “Pay overtime. Get it done.”
It’s clear which one of those answers is the more impactful one, the more memorable one, the one that left the longest-lasting mark.
Again, we are the smarter party and when it comes to Trump, literally everyone is smarter. This is about who can wield the intellect, emotion, and sharp wit to deliver the most damage possible.