Warren’s Anti-Wall Street Rhetoric Doesn’t Exactly Agree With Her Lifestyle
Elizabeth Warren has built a political career around advocating for the common man.
Authoring titles such as “This Fight Is Our Fight: The Battle to Save America’s Middle Class,” Warren has worked to associate herself with anti-cronyism, higher taxes for corporations and a fierce determination to fight against income inequality.
It has long been known, however, that Warren herself has no familiarity with the middle-class struggle and, in fact, has secretly invested millions of dollars in Wall Street corporations for her own financial gain. Warren’s recent Senate financial disclosure statement shows that while her rhetoric is anti-Wall Street, her financial success is very much due to investments with these same groups.
Warren’s 2017 financial disclosure statements show that she has invested over $2 million in TIAA, a Fortune 100 financial services organization whose CEO, Roger Ferguson, made $18.5 million in 2016. Although the organization claims to be a nonprofit offering financial advice, they operate identically to other large corporate groups, pay their executives more than Citibank and have close to $1 trillion in assets.
TIAA’s image as a benevolent provider of investment advice faced scrutiny in 2017 when their own employees accused them of intentionally providing poor recommendations to clients in order to generate higher fees. This is particularly diabolical considering that the majority of TIAA’s clients are public school teachers, nurses, municipal workers and U.S. military members.
Such practices would violate the legal standard if applied in the financial sector, but TIAA’s nonprofit status kept them from facing these violations. Despite this, Warren increased her investments with the group after these lawsuits, disregarding a clear opportunity to embody her own message of stopping big business from taking advantage of the little guy.
Comparing these actions to Warren’s rhetoric, it is hard to understand why she would refrain from condemning TIAA’s nefarious actions.
Historically, Warren has not shied away from publicly shaming corporations she has deemed untrustworthy: Warren condemned Wells Fargo for what she called “consumer abuse” of taking advantage of clients, going so far as to demand that the Federal Reserve vote on accountability enforcements for the bank. Interestingly, Warren had no such qualms when lawsuits were brought against TIAA for similar practices and continued to invest heavily with their practice.
With this in mind, it seems logical to conclude that Warren stays silent only when she is set up to profit and is willing to look the other way when those profits come from groups she disagrees with.
Instead of demonstrating that she is willing to practice what she preaches, behind the scenes, Warren is willing to strike any deal that is in her own best interest. Warren was a vocal champion of upholding the fiduciary rule, which would require that financial workers be held to higher standards in order to protect investors, while TIAA actively disregarded this rule and lobbied against it.
Warren’s support of Wall Street goes beyond her investments with TIAA. The senator was quoted saying that Democratic votes in favor of Wall Street were “like a stab in the heart” and also stated that she “couldn’t see how any Senator could vote for deregulation” of Wall Street. Saying all of this while having a net worth close to $10 million, including several investments with Wall Street corporations and a history of supporting the Ex-Im bank, is the height of hypocrisy.
Warren is willing to espouse whatever she believes will win favor with voters and earn her a headline — all while secretly profiting behind the scenes. These actions are, at the very least, a black mark against Warren’s moral compass, if not a genuine ethical dilemma.
It is easy to guess that anyone willing to invest their own capital in the industries they claim to hate could be dishonest in other areas as well. Warren’s 2017 financial statement also failed to list the funding for the Washington, D.C., condominium that she purchased in 2013. In previous financial disclosures, she used legislative loopholes to avoid disclosing the financing for her multi-million dollar second home in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Warren seems to be going to great lengths to hide her true financial standing, most likely in the attempt to hide the depth of her deceit to voters and the American public. In this current climate of constant media, however, the truth will inevitably come to light. When it does, Warren’s opponents stand to profit.
Her opponent Geoff Diehl, the endorsed Republican candidate, submitted a fully transparent financial disclosure statement that did not report any financial assets in conflict with his platform. In contrast, Diehl’s small family business serves only to validate his position as a representative who is genuinely familiar with the experiences of the working class. When comparing these two options, the choice for Massachusetts voters seems clearer than ever.
Rachel Tripp writes about liberty from Washington, DC.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.