Barbara Walters Gushes Over Elizabeth Warren: 'I Can See You Running for President'
With only weeks left before she retires, View co-host Barbara Walters on Wednesday found time to fawn over another liberal Democrat. The veteran journalist repeatedly hyped Senator Elizabeth Warren as a possible president. As though she were the politician's publicist, Walters enthused, "A small town, Oklahoma girl grows up, handles the challenges of being a young, single mother, practically a teenager. She becomes a Harvard law professor, a congressional advisor, and then the first female senator in the history of Massachusetts."
The host blurbed, "...Could her next move be the White House?" This was a topic Walter kept coming back to. Regarding a 2016 bid, she wondered, "What about the future? In the back of your mind, do you think maybe?" The journalist insisted that "some" are calling her "the future president" and "Hillary Clinton's nightmare." [MP3 audio here.]
The best Walters could do for a tough question came with this rather lame attempt:
BARBARA WALTERS: You have made some enemies because people think you're against big business. And all I hear about these days, and rightly so, is inequality, inequality. How do you answer that?
Walters never mentioned dubious claims by Warren in 2012 about having Native American heritage.
Instead, she returned to her favorite theme. The co-host closed the segment by enthusing, "I can see you running for president."
In contrast, when conservatives such as Governor Nikki Haley have appeared on The View, they often face hostile and tough questions.
Walters will retire from the show on May 16.
A transcript of the April 23 View segment is below:
BARBARA WALTERS: So, how's this for an American success story? A small town Oklahoma girl grows up, handles the challenges of being a young, single mother, practically a teenager. She becomes a Harvard Law professor, a congressional advisor, and then the first female senator in the history of Massachusetts. So people are saying, could her next move be the White House? We will now ask her. Please welcome the author of the new book A Fighting Chance, Senator Elizabeth Warren! I read your book and I loved your book, and I love the fact you married your husband who is a law professor at Harvard because you liked his legs.
ELIZABETH WARREN: It's true. He has good legs.
WALTERS: It was love at first leg, right? Some people have been calling you a -- the future president. And some people say, "Oh, she's Hillary Clinton's nightmare." You have said you do not want to run now. You didn't say now, you said you do not to want run. What about the future? In the back of your mind, do you think maybe?
WARREN: I'm not running for president. I -- I wrote a book called A Fighting Chance out of gratitude. I grew up, like a lot of folks, in a family that had a lot of ups and downs. And when I was 12, my dad had a heart attack. He ended up as a maintenance man. My mom saved our house by getting a minimum wage job at Sears. Back in those days, a minimum wage job would carry you that far.
WALTERS: And she had one black dress.
WARREN; That's right. She had one black dress. She pulled that dress on and she went over and she was 50 years old and applied for the first job to work outside the home. College wasn't in the cards for a kid like me, except I went to a commuter college that cost $50 a semester. And so, I wrote this book because I'm deeply grateful to my mom and dad who worked all their lives and had so little. And I'm deeply grateful to an America that was investing in our kids and creating opportunities for them. That was it for me.
JENNY MCCARTHY: The American dream worked for you, but why doesn't it work for so many kids today?
WARREN: Well, what's happened is we have seen big changes. Washington today works for those who can hire armies of lobbyists and lawyers. And that means big corporations, billionaires. They make sure that all the rules go their way, all the tax breaks go their way. Let me give you an example of that. So, today, a kid who wants to go to college, and their mom or dad can't write a check, there it is. That young person – I talk about this in the book. That young person borrows money from the United States government. Now, here's the deal, good for the government to lend it. But the government then charges them not just the cost of the loan, but so much more that today the U.S. government is making tens of billions of dollars in profits off the backs of our kids. That is obscene. That is not what America is for. [ Cheers and applause ]
WALTERS: And these kids take years and years and years to pay off those loans.
WARREN: That's right.
WALTERS: So, I want to talk a little bit about what you have done, because you created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
WHOOPI GOLDBERG: That's right.
WALTERS: And it sets strict rules for banks. But you have been called the sheriff of Wall Street. You have made some enemies because people think you're against big business. And all I hear about these days, and rightly so, is inequality, inequality. How do you answer that?
WARREN: Well, I'll tell you, I'm not against big business. I'm against cheating.
WARREN: I'm against cheating. [ Applause ] So here was the deal. Basically, up until – at the financial crisis – big banks could pretty much do anything they wanted on mortgages, on credit cards.
GOLDBERG: That's right.
WARREN: And they built a whole business model around tricking people and trapping people and they made billions of dollars doing it, and by the way, brought down the entire United States economy. I thought what we needed was a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, just one little agency in government that said on these financial products we need a level playing field. You ought to be able to know what the terms of the deal are before you sign. I want to tell you something about that agency. We fought together to get it. The banks spent more than a million dollars a day to block that agency and block financial reforms. We got it and today that little agency, barely getting started has already put $3 billion back into the pockets of families who got cheated.
MCCARTHY: Wow. You're awesome.
WALTERS: Senator, we'd love to have you back. I can see you running for president. Okay! You would love you to come back, not run for president, right? And no matter what, we thank you, Senator Elizabeth Warren. Members of our audience are going home with a copy of A Fighting Chance. Believe me, you will enjoy it.
— Scott Whitlock is Senior News Analyst at the Media Research Center. Follow Scott Whitlock on Twitter.