Sen. Elizabeth Warren announced on Thursday that she is dropping out of the 2020 presidential race, causing frustration and uncertainty among many of her staunchest Vineyard supporters.
Warren structured her presidential campaign largely around race and LGBTQ issues, and highlighted the importance of breaking down barriers for middle-class American families.
After a dismal polling performance for Warren on Super Tuesday, she decided to end her run for president, but pledged to Americans in a press conference that she will “stay in the fight.”
During the press conference, Warren thanked her supporters for “the honor of a lifetime,” and said that although she is no longer running for president, she will still be a stalwart advocate for American families and marginalized communities.
Warren advocate and Dukes County Commissioner Keith Chatinover said, “It was a really sad day,” but the result was not unexpected.
“She has been a hero of mine ever since she ran in 2012. She did a really fantastic job of bringing a policy debate to the conversation, and bringing a group of really important voices into her campaign,” Chatinover said.
Chatinover said Warren brought gender and race issues out into the open, and represented the intersectionality of economic inequity with marginalized populations in America.
According to Chatinover, Warren didn’t see a path forward to winning the nomination, and didn’t see the point in staying in a race that she wasn’t confident she could win.
“She was well-funded in the month of February, but she is an advocate and a fighter first and foremost, and she will continue to represent those values,” Chatinover said.
In the coming weeks, Chatinover said, he will be watching Warren’s next steps, and said he will “follow her lead,” as the election draws closer.
With former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders slated to be the two contenders for the Democratic nomination, Chatinover said he is disappointed that the established paradigm of American government is not being challenged.
“It’s pretty depressing that a party as diverse as ours is going to have to choose between two white males in their upper 70s,” Chatinover said. “We need to do a better job of recruiting and making viable candidates that aren’t straight, white males.”
At this time, Chatinover said he isn’t sure which candidate he will endorse now that Warren has closed out her campaign.
Sen. Julian Cyr, D-Truro, said that Warren’s ability to translate the issues that have been plaguing American families for decades into legitimate policy plans is “truly remarkable.”
“Much of Elizabeth Warren’s work led her to realize how many barriers most Americans face. She knew we need major structural change to have a society with some semblance of fairness,” Cyr said.
According to Cyr, America needs a robust middle class in order to ensure a functioning democracy. “I am a little disappointed with our choices in candidates these days. I don’t think the two front-runners are reflective of the direction this country is trying to go in,” Cyr said.
Warren advocate and Vineyarder Catherine Walthers worked on the Warren campaign trail, and said in a text message that she is “deeply saddened” by the news.
“Women and families are among the losers here,” Walthers said.
Another Island supporter, Margaret Emerson, said that although she is disappointed, she feels like Warren “contributed a lot to the discussion.”
“She has done so much for middle America; it has been her whole life’s work,” Emerson said.
Co-leader of Students for Warren at Cornell University, and former MV Times intern, Amanda Cronin said in a message that she started campaigning for Warren last August, and organized her first event at the picnic tables in front of Scottish Bakehouse.
“I knew she was my candidate because she inspired fierce hope in me, and because her policy plans made so much sense,” Cronin said.
Warren’s choice to suspend her campaign was a particularly difficult loss for Cronin, because of all the time and effort she has put into supporting her. “It is a difficult loss to take because it feels personal. She was overprepared and overqualified, and yet that still wasn’t enough, because sexism is still a factor in our country’s political world,” Cronin said.
Even with the news of Warren dropping out of the race, Cronin said, working for her for the past seven months was “the honor of [her] life,” and that she will continue to push for her progressive policy plans “until all 70-plus [plans] make it to the Hill.”