Should Democratic nominee Joe Biden win the presidential election next week, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) wants to play a major role in the U.S. economy in a potential Biden administration, a new report suggests.
Politico, citing “three Democratic officials who have spoken” with Warren’s “inner circle,” reports that the Massachusetts senator and third-place Democratic presidential candidate has her eyes set on the role of treasury secretary, and plans to advocate for herself starting next week, should the Democrats take control of the White House.
“She wants it,” two of the officials told the news agency of Warren’s ambitions.
As Politico notes, the treasury secretary in the next president’s administration, whether it be Trump’s or Biden’s, “will be tasked with steering the U.S. economy out of a deep recession, even as the country continues to struggle with the coronavirus pandemic.” (On Thursday, the Bureau of Economic Analysis announced that GDP went up 33.1% for the third quarter, making it the best quarter in U.S. history, after the country experienced the worst quarter in U.S. history).
Under President Donald Trump, Steven Mnuchin has taken on a prominent role in the coronavirus economic response, serving as a negotiator for the administration’s relief proposals alongside White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows. Both Mnuchin and House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) have been engaged in on-and-off — and thus far, unsuccessful — coronavirus package talks since the summer.
But with no coronavirus relief package expected ahead of the election, and the probability of a package passing after the election uncertain, Warren could end up taking on a similar role as Mnuchin if Biden ultimately wins the presidential election.
A spokesperson for Warren provided the news agency with the following comment: “It’s 5 days out, we’re focused on the election and encourage everyone else to be as well.”
Among the hallmarks of Warren’s failed presidential campaign were her economic plans, such as her “two-cent” plan, which called for wide-scale wealth confiscation for people with a net worth greater than $50 million.
The plan also called for a 6% tax on every dollar of net worth over a billion dollars, including assets not easily sellable and, as such, potentially not easily payable either.
“Suppose a 40-year-old entrepreneur has a net worth of $525 million, the midpoint of Ms. Warren’s 2% wealth-tax bracket,” outlined a Wall Street Journal op-ed explaining the plan. “If his net worth otherwise didn’t change, an annual wealth tax of ‘just’ 2% would confiscate an amount equal to more than 50% of this value over the rest of a normal lifespan. After death, he would also pay a 40% tax on whatever remained above an $11 million exemption. Ms. Warren’s ‘just 2 cents’ combined with the death tax would add up to about 70% of the value of those assets.”
According to Politico, a “fourth Democratic source who spoke with former Warren staffers” said the Massachusetts senator plans to stay put if she doesn’t receive the role, and instead try to snag a spot on the Senate Finance Committee.
Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), the runner-up in the Democratic primary, is said to be interested in a separate administration position involving labor laws.