Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenTreasury says more rental aid is reaching tenants, preventing evictions 11 senators urge House to pass .5T package before infrastructure bill Senate Democrats seeking information from SPACs, questioning 'misaligned incentives' MORE (D-Mass.) on Friday fired back at White House chief of staff John KellyJohn Francis KellyMORE over reports from the day before that he called her an "impolite arrogant woman" in a 2017 email.
"Absolutely most insulting conversation I have ever had with anyone,” Kelly wrote, according to BuzzFeed News.
"What an impolite arrogant woman. She immediately began insulting our people accusing them of not following the court order, insulting and abusive behavior towards those covered by the pause, blah blah blah," he added, referring the Trump administration's travel ban.
"Was I tough on John Kelly in that phone call? You bet I was. Apparently he thought I was an 'impolite arrogant woman,' " Warren tweeted.
Was I tough on John Kelly in that phone call? You bet I was. Apparently he thought I was an “impolite arrogant woman.” “Blah blah blah” – that’s all he had to say when he was called out for breaking the law and destroying lives.— Elizabeth Warren (@elizabethforma) October 12, 2018
“There are some men who can only hear 'blah blah blah' whenever a woman’s talking. But there’s nothing impolite about people’s right to speak out and hold their government accountable. And sometimes, people are right to be angry,” she added.
The email chain referred to a conversation Kelly and Warren had over Boston's Logan Airport regarding several of Warren’s constituents who were detained there under the travel ban despite having visas.
I asked John Kelly for an office number I could use in the future to reach him more quickly. He tried to give me the main line listed on @DHSgov’s website (really). Let’s just say I persisted longer than he did – and eventually I got his cell phone number.— Elizabeth Warren (@elizabethforma) October 12, 2018
Before we got off the phone, I gave John Kelly something back for his troubles: a message on behalf of the American people that it was time to follow the court order and allow people stranded abroad to board planes into Logan Airport.— Elizabeth Warren (@elizabethforma) October 12, 2018
The date on Kelly's email chain suggests his conversation with Warren was regarding the first iteration of President TrumpDonald TrumpJulian Castro knocks Biden administration over refugee policy Overnight Energy & Environment — League of Conservation Voters — Climate summit chief says US needs to 'show progress' on environment Five takeaways from Arizona's audit results MORE's travel ban, which was later revamped following multiple court rulings against it.
Warren is no stranger to turning her opponents’ criticism into a weapon.
She was cut off on the Senate floor early last year while giving a speech opposing then-Sen. Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsOvernight Hillicon Valley — Apple issues security update against spyware vulnerability Stanford professors ask DOJ to stop looking for Chinese spies at universities in US Overnight Energy & Environment — Democrats detail clean electricity program MORE’s (R-Ala.) nomination to be attorney general. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellWe don't need platinum to solve the debt ceiling crisis The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Alibaba - Democrats argue price before policy amid scramble House passes standalone bill to provide B for Israel's Iron Dome MORE (R-Ky.) interrupted her for impugning “the motives and conduct of our colleague from Alabama.”
Warren continued, but was ultimately stopped when McConnell objected and that objection was approved by a 49-43 vote.
“Sen. Warren was giving a lengthy speech. She had appeared to violate the rule. She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted,” McConnell explained.
The phrase “nevertheless, she persisted” immediately went viral in liberal circles and has become a calling card for the Massachusetts Democrat, who is considered a possible 2020 White House candidate.
The Trump administration and Warren have repeatedly feuded since the president took office. Trump often attacks the progressive senator with the racially charged "Pocahontas" epithet, referring to her claims of Native American ancestry.