Warren announces White House bid, getting early jump on 2020 race

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenWarren embraces Thiel label: 'Good' Trump says administration will 'take a look' after Thiel raises concerns about Google, China Thiel calls Warren the most 'dangerous' Democratic candidate MORE (Mass.) became the first major Democratic name to jump into the 2020 presidential race on Monday, announcing that she is forming an exploratory committee to run for the White House. 

The senator made the announcement in a video sent to supporters and posted on YouTube. 

ADVERTISEMENT

“America’s middle class is under attack,” Warren said in the video. “How did we get here? Billionaires and big corporations decided they wanted more of the pie. And they enlisted politicians to cut them a bigger slice.”

Warren’s announcement comes about 13 months before the Iowa caucuses. Aside from Warren, the biggest name to have announced an exploratory committee is former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro.

Warren has long been seen as a leading contender for the Democratic Party's 2020 presidential nomination. The liberal stalwart, first elected to the Senate in 2012, is a proven fundraiser and party heavyweight who declined to step into the 2016 presidential primary. 

Warren, 69, is a former Harvard professor who first came to national prominence after the 2008 financial crisis. Warren chaired an oversight panel established by Congress that evaluated government programs intended to bolster the country after the crisis and worked to establish the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. 

Polls suggest former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden jokes he's ready for a push-up competition with Trump Biden says his presidency is not 'a third term of Obama' Biden knocks Trump on tweets about 'smart as hell' Ocasio-Cortez MORE and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersWarren embraces Thiel label: 'Good' Sanders slams decision not to charge officer who killed Eric Garner Cardi B says voters let Bernie Sanders down MORE (I-Vt.) are the early leaders for the Democratic nomination, which could be a reflection of their high name recognition. If Sanders enters the primary, he and Warren could compete for progressive voters.

The primary is expected to be crowded. Other figures looking at the race include Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeO'Rourke raises .6 million in second quarter Biden support slips below 30 percent in new poll Biden proposes tax increases for wealthy as part of health care plan MORE (Texas), former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Sens. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerHarris slams DOJ decision not to charge police in Eric Garner's death The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by JUUL Labs - House to vote to condemn Trump tweet Fundraising numbers highlight growing divide in 2020 race MORE (N.J.), Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by JUUL Labs - House to vote to condemn Trump tweet Fundraising numbers highlight growing divide in 2020 race Critics slam billion Facebook fine as weak MORE (Minn.), Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownDemocrat Sherrod Brown torches Facebook at hearing: 'They broke journalism, helped incite a genocide' Trump puts hopes for Fed revolution on unconventional candidate Budowsky: Harris attacked Biden, helped Trump MORE (Ohio), Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisHarris slams DOJ decision not to charge police in Eric Garner's death Harris vows to 'put people over profit' in prescription drug plan The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by JUUL Labs - House to vote to condemn Trump tweet MORE (Calif.) and Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth GillibrandThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by JUUL Labs - House to vote to condemn Trump tweet Fundraising numbers highlight growing divide in 2020 race Five things to watch for at Defense nominee's confirmation hearing MORE (N.Y.). 

The formation of the exploratory committee was preceded by other signals from Warren that she is going to run for president.

In October, Warren announced the results of a DNA test that showed "strong evidence" that she has Native American ancestry. The move was intended to put to rest scrutiny that she had claimed Native American ancestry, something President TrumpDonald John TrumpEsper sidesteps question on whether he aligns more with Mattis or Trump Warren embraces Thiel label: 'Good' As tensions escalate, US must intensify pressure on Iran and the IAEA MORE had used to question her credibility. 

Trump frequently refers to Warren as "Pocahontas," a racially charged remark that has drawn intense criticism.

The release of the test does not appear to have ended Trump's insults, and it also drew criticism from some Native American groups who see such genetic tests as problematic. 

Warren discusses themes such as economic equality, government accountability and reining in big corporations in the four-and-a-half minute video. 

“I’ve spent my career getting to the bottom of why America’s promise works for some families, but others who work just as hard slip through the cracks into disaster,” Warren says. “What I’ve found is terrifying. These aren’t cracks that families are falling into, they’re traps.”

She concludes the clip by saying, “If we organize together, if we fight together, if we persist together we can win.

“We can and we will.” 

The move from Warren comes just a couple days after she dropped the Massachusetts prefix from her official Twitter account handle, fueling speculation that a bid for president would soon be announced. 

The Washington Post reported that Warren is expected to base her campaign headquarters in Boston. It will likely be led by longtime aide Dan Geldon.