Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has been an outspoken critic of the corrupting influence of Super PACs in American politics, but Warren offered effusive praise in her new book for “a stunningly generous woman” who gave $14 million to a Super PAC that kept Warren’s 2020 presidential campaign afloat in the waning days of the Democratic primary.
In her new book, Persist, Warren defends her apparent contradictory behavior in condemning Super PACs, while also benefiting from one during her presidential campaign.
Warren wrote in one portion of the book:
As 2019 and the primary season got closer, rumors began flying about various people who were likely to run. There was a lot of talk about how a number of would-be candidates were already lining up corporate executives and industry lobbyists and their millionaire friends to help them out.
Warren, who claimed in the book that she was “no longer the naive political newcomer,” says she knew that “‘help them out’ was a polite way of saying “raise more money than anyone else in the race.’” She continued in the book:
I carved out a different path. This was a Democrat-versus-Democrat primary, and I decided during the primary season I would not hold a single big-dollar fundraiser. I would not make a single call to a rich person to ask for money. I would not take a dime from a PAC or a lobbyist. In short, I wouldn’t sell access to my time.
While boasting about her inability to interact with and take money from big donors, Warren goes on to note in the same portion of the book that a woman put “$14 million into a super PAC to pay for ads promoting my candidacy in Super Tuesday states.” She wrote:
Near the end of the presidential primary season, the whole money business took an unexpected turn. A stunningly generous woman put $14 million into a super PAC to pay for ads promoting my candidacy in Super Tuesday states. I had met her a few times back when I was running for the Senate, but as far as I know, she didn’t have any business interest to promote…
Warren goes on to say she was “convinced that this woman believed in what I was fighting for” as she benefitted from the $14 million worth of advertisements and attempted to justify the contribution by talking about others in the race who reaped the rewards of super PACs.
“By this point, every other candidate who participated in the Las Vegas debate — Joe, Bernie, Pete, and Amy — also had a super PAC or similar outside support,” Warren wrote in the chapter.
Nonetheless, Warren concluded that she “will keep up the fight for a world in which no one can engage in this kind of spending on behalf of anyone – including me.”
Warren, while claiming to distance herself from rich donors and super PACs, is certainly no stranger to them.
Last March, FEC filings revealed that Warren had the support of Silicon Valley doctor and Democrat megadonor Karla Jurvetson through Persist PAC, the super PAC that attempted to save Warren’s campaign. Jarvestson reportedly provided the bulk of the PAC’s resources through a $14.6 million donation last February, according to FEC filings.