Former Vice President Joe Biden, the Democratic Party's presumptive presidential nominee, is facing pressure from big money donors not to select Sen. Elizabeth Warren as his running mate in the general election—even as polling from YouGov and the Economist shows Democratic voters support the Massachusetts senator over other options.
"I think a lot of the donor base, on board and coming, would prefer almost anyone but Elizabeth," one longtime Biden fundraiser told CNBC Thursday. "I don't see him choosing her for veep."
Hey JOE, maybe don’t listen to the big Wall St. donors? Can’t you see they are the ones causing the damn mess? https://t.co/9x9odWlsG0— Scarlett Rabe (@scarlettrabe) April 30, 2020
The YouGov poll, which was conducted between April 26 and 28, found that voters were most enthusiastic about a Biden/Warren ticket.
As Newsweek reported:
Warren was backed by 26% of Democratic respondents, while Biden's other former rival for the Democratic nomination, Senator Kamala Harris of California, came in second with support from 18% of the party's voters. Stacey Abrams, who ran unsuccessfully to become Georgia's governor in 2018, came in third with 12, and Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, who also previously sought the Democratic presidential nomination, came in fourth with 11%.
Concerns and preferences of rank and file voters aside, a number of donors have expressed opposition to Warren, with one unnamed Wall Street executive claiming that Warren would be a "horrible" choice and lead Biden to "lose the election." According to CNBC, a number of wealthy Biden donors have had conversations with the campaign to pressure him to pick more palatable option for Wall Street.
As CNBC reported:
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Those conversations have recently included attempts to push the campaign away from picking Warren and encouraging the choice of other candidates purportedly on his list, such as Sens. Kamala Harris and Amy Klobuchar, and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. Many Biden contributors spoke on the condition of anonymity as these conversations, both with Biden and among his associates, were in private.
John Morgan, a Florida businessman and Biden supporter, said that he was distressed by the turn Warren took in the primary where she, in Morgan's view, "tried to out-Bernie Bernie." It was a sharp contrast to the Warren for whom Morgan implied he held a fundraiser.
"There are two Elizabeth Warrens," said Morgan. "The one I had in my home when she was a U.S. senator and consumer champion. She was awesome."
But despite the efforts of the donors pushing him to pick a more Wall Street friendly running mate, Biden may not be listening. The campaign has reached out to progressives in recent weeks as the former vice president has prioritized making inroads with supporters of former opponents Warren and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) as he works to build a coalition to take the White House.
Journalist Erick Fernandez was unimpressed with the efforts by big money to keep Warren off the ticket.
"Maybe a presumptive nominee shouldn't be picking a Vice President according to what some Wall Street executives think!" tweeted Fernandez.
If anything, IfNotNow co-founder and former Warren staffer Max Berger said on Twitter, the opposition to Warren means she should be the pick.
"Wall Street donors are pressuring Joe Biden not to pick Elizabeth Warren for VP," said Berger. "That's as good a reason as any to do it."