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Elizabeth Warren builds momentum, energy to challenge Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders

Jonathan Tamari, The Philadelphia Inquirer on

Published in News & Features

Perhaps more surprisingly, Warren has also made inroads with some more centrist Democrats, including some in the donor class who view her as more electable and less hostile than Sanders, whom they viewed as too radical.

Yet even some who like Warren worried she may be too liberal for the swing states that could decide the race.

"I agree with so many of her policies," said Hilda Slivka, 65, who attended the Biden event in Laconia. "I just think he (Biden) can garner more votes than she can. We've gotta win." She hoped for a Biden-Warren ticket.

Sanders supporters point to his dominance in small donations and leadership on Democrats' top policy issue, health care, as evidence of his strength, along with his own raucous reception in Manchester. Biden's campaign has touted the breadth of his coalition, emphasizing his support from the white working class, black voters and Hispanics. Warren's backing skews whiter, wealthier and more college-educated.

Some Democrats also argue that ideas alone won't win, suggesting that Warren may face new criticism as she climbs.

"We need candidates ... that are going to speak to the guts and the heart and the soul of people," Sen. Cory Booker told Democrats at a Nashua, N.H. coffee shop. "Because the person with the best 15-point policy plan is not the person that wins. If it was, we would have won the last presidential election."


Warren, in her speech, acknowledged the concern gripping Democrats who may be afraid of pushing too far left.

"I get it, there is a lot at stake. And people are scared," she told the crowd. "But we can't choose a candidate we don't believe in because we're scared, and we can't ask other people to vote for someone we don't believe in."

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