Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D) took her fiery populist message to West Virginia on Monday, where she campaigned for Democratic Senate candidate Natalie Tennant.
With President Obama relegated to the bench due to his unpopularity in West Virginia and other red states, Warren has been stumping for Democratic candidates in tough races across the country.
In West Virginia, she issued an aggressive indictment of Wall Street’s abuses and excesses.
She knocked Tennant’s Republican opponent, Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, the chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee's subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit, as having “been there” when Wall Street “needs her.”
"She's out there for Wall Street. She's leading the charge. ... We need some more people who are willing to work on the side of America's families,” Warren said.
Warren is one of the few Democrats who shares Obama's ability to fire up grassroots progressives, and she doesn't inspire the same animus from Republicans. That makes her an effective supporter on the campaign trail for candidates such as Tennant, who is facing an uphill climb to win the retiring Sen. Jay Rockefeller's (D-W.Va.) seat.
There are some policy differences between Warren and Tennant that Republicans are likely to try to exploit, however.
Tennant is opposed to the Environmental Protection Agency’s new regulations on emissions from power plants, which are likely to impact West Virginia’s coal industry, while Warren supports them.
Capito’s spokeswoman Amy Graham said Warren’s visit to the state showed how “out of touch [Tennant] is with this state.”
“She is a supporter of President Obama, a supporter of Elizabeth Warren and she’s going to have a hard time convincing West Virginia voters she’s not associated with their extremely harmful and deeply unpopular policies,” Graham said on Monday. “What we saw today was Natalie Tennant hitting the panic button in a last ditch effort to save her struggling campaign.”
During the campaign appearance, Warren and Tennant highlighted the issues where they stand together, though they also made reference to their disagreements.
“Natalie Tennant and I do not agree on every issue,” Warren said at one point, “but on the core issue, on the issue that is about our values, on the issue that defines us as human beings, Natalie and I agree: Our job is to fight for the families of America.”
And Tennant echoed: “We don’t agree on everything.”
“We are here today to talk about education, about lifting the middle class, about saying no to Wall Street.”
Both back raising the minimum wage, lowering interest rates on student loans and winning equal pay for women.