Sep 16, 2019

Elizabeth Warren unveils sweeping anti-corruption plan

Elizabeth Warren speaks at Massachusetts' Democratic Party convention. Photo: Preston Ehrler/SOPA Images/LightRocket/Getty Images

2020 Democratic contender Sen. Elizabeth Warren released Monday a massive new plan to prevent corruption in Washington, D.C., as a part of her promise to institute what she calls "the most sweeping set of anti-corruption reforms since Watergate" if elected.

Why it matters: If enacted, the wide-ranging proposal would dramatically restructure the federal government by limiting lobbyists' influence on Congress, expanding protections for workers and requiring federal judges to publicly post their financial reports and speeches.

Details: To prevent conflicts of interest in the executive branch, her plan would force presidents and vice presidents to place their businesses into a blind trust to be sold off and senior government officials to divest from privately owned assets.

  • It would also restrict the crossover between lobbying and government by preventing former elected officials and senior government appointees from becoming lobbyists and vice versa.
  • It would apply the Code of Conduct for United States Judges, which governs the behavior of most federal judges, to Supreme Court justices. Federal judges would also have to post their financial reports, recusal decisions and private speeches.
  • It would prevent companies from putting arbitration clauses in employee contracts for employment, which forces individuals to agree to never file a lawsuit in federal court against the company.
  • Worth noting: These are only some of the top-line proposals from Warren's lengthy plan.

What they're saying: Warren said the plan's goal is "to take power away from the wealthy and the well-connected in Washington and put it back where it belongs — in the hands of the people."

Between the lines: Warren believes the rest of her far-reaching legislative goals like the Green New Deal and Medicare for All hinge on her anti-corruption plan.

Yes, but: "There are some unresolved questions on the legality of Warren’s plan to ban all fundraising activities for lobbyists given recent Supreme Court rulings on campaign finance and free speech," per Politico.

What's next: Warren will give a speech in New York City's Washington Square Park at 7pm ET to discuss the plan — near the site of 1911's Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Attacks on Elizabeth Warren rise as she surges in polling

Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

As Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) surges in the polls to a consistent second place behind former Vice President Joe Biden, heightened attention has exposed her to more serious efforts to attack her by other members of the Democratic field.

Driving the news: In recent days, Biden and Mayor Pete Buttigieg criticized Warren for dodging questions about whether her Medicare for All proposal will raise taxes on middle-class Americans, according to USA Today. Both Buttigieg and Biden oppose abolishing private insurance under Sen. Bernie Sanders' Medicare for All plan, and instead favor a "public option."

Go deeperArrowSep 22, 2019

Wall Street is scared of Elizabeth Warren

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Wall Street's fear of Elizabeth Warren puts its many never-Trumpers in an electoral pickle.

The big picture: Warren regularly aims her ire at professional financiers, whereas progressive rival Bernie Sanders is typically more generic in his "millionaires and billionaires" rhetoric.

Go deeperArrowSep 20, 2019

Joe Biden's higher education plan includes free community college

Joe Biden speaking at a candidate forum. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Joe Biden's 2020 campaign unveiled a $750 billion higher education plan Tuesday that includes tuition-free community and technical college — with the federal government picking up 75% of the cost and allowing states to cover the rest — as well as more generous federal college loan programs, per the AP.

The state of play: Biden's plan isn't as far reaching as those put forth by his opponents, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, who both offer plans exceeding $1 trillion. Sanders' plan proposes eliminating all student loan debt, while Warren calls for broad debt relief based on income.

Go deeper ... Debt-free college: Where the 2020 presidential candidates stand