Republicans in Massachusetts have chosen a confusing line of attack on Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren, the Democrat who helped create the Consumer Financial Protection Agency and is now challenging Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA).
They’re calling her, for some reason, the “Matriarch of Mayhem,” and suggesting that “Occupy Wall Street” is somehow an “anti-capitalist” movement that she secretly leads.
Brace for the scary music.
In a new ad released this week, the Massachusetts GOP tries to connect Warren’s comment that the “Occupy Wall Street” protesters are calling for financial reforms — similar to those she helped author — with a couple of fringe protesters whose on-camera comments are taken severely out of context, as if they represent the tens of thousands who’ve participated in marches over the last month.
The ad also quotes Warren saying she’d “thrown rocks” at people who don’t support her (she was speaking rhetorically), and implies that she literally wants “blood and teeth on the floor” if the U.S. does not get a strong consumer watchdog.
Her other comment quoted in the video — “My first choice is a strong consumer agency… My second choice is no agency at all and plenty of blood and teeth on the floor” — was a hockey reference meant to urge the president and Democrats in Congress to fight for a strong agency.
But try explaining that to the Massachusetts GOP.
As for “Occupy Wall Street” being “anti-capitalist,” it’s simply not true. The overreaching message of the occpations in most major U.S. cities is their desire to highlight income inequality in the U.S., where wealth is distributed more unevenly than in any country in the world.
They also call for an end to the corruption of America’s political process, which many see being driven by the financial industries and the unfettered greed on Wall Street spilling over into Congress and the statehouses.
Only a very small number of the participants self-identify as “anti-capitalist,” and the movement has been seen as increasingly attracting tea party supporters who became demoralized by the Republican Party’s efforts to essentially co-opt their original movement, which sought to oppose the “socialism” of bank bailouts. Many at “Occupy Wall Street” would sympathize with this position, which has led some public intellectuals to call for a more inclusive “99 Percent” movement that bands together liberals and conservatives to call for true financial and political reforms.
Polling earlier this month found that even while Warren’s campaign has only just begun, she’s almost tied with Brown, who leads 41 percent to 38 percent.
This video was published to YouTube on Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2011.
Photo: Flickr user Leader Nancy Pelosi.
(H/T: Talking Points Memo)