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Analysis

There are many reasons why Joe Biden shouldn’t pick Elizabeth Warren as VP. And yet...

The Massachusetts senator reportedly remains among the few Biden is considering for a running mate

Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren in 2019.
Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren in 2019.John Minchillo/Associated Press

The many reasons Joe Biden shouldn’t pick Senator Elizabeth Warren to be his running mate are well established.

— She offers nothing when it comes the Electoral College, since Massachusetts is almost certainly in the bag for Democrats.

— Ideologically, they are far apart.

— They differ on their approach to governing. He generally believes in the power of the bipartisan legislative process. She’s seen as more of a fighter than a conciliator.

— There is a strong expectation that Biden will choose a Black woman; Warren is not one.

— In terms of age, Biden has said his vice presidential pick should serve as a bridge to the next generation. Both Warren and Biden are in their 70s.

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— Biden has long played it safe politically and has every incentive to continue to when polls show him a commanding front-runner. Warren prides herself on being bold and not playing it safe.

— Heck, her home state even has a Republican governor and, under current law, Charlie Baker would appoint her successor until a special election for a permanent replacement could be held. The law could be changed by the Democratic super-majority in the Legislature, but it could be a bad look in a time of grave crisis.

And yet!

Months into the grueling process for Biden’s team to chop down a long list of potential names to a handful of possible nominees to pick from in the next month, Warren’s name remains on the list.

A recent CNN report was just the latest of many to find that Warren is now among four strong finalists for the job, and the only white woman. Also on the list were Senator Kamala Harris of California, Representative Val Demings of Florida, and Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms. Others also being looked at, but not as strongly, according to CNN, were former Obama administration national security adviser Susan Rice, Representative Karen Bass of California and Senators Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin and Tammy Duckworth of Illinois.

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These names are largely consistent with other stories from other news outlets based on deep reporting, not just on speculation.

Additionally, a recent poll of college students listed Warren their favorite pick for Biden. Possibly the most respected Democratic pollster in the country, Stan Greenberg, did his own research and told Biden’s team that, “Sentor. Warren is the obvious solution.”

Interestingly a New York Times/ Siena College poll found that 9 in 10 Democrats in the six biggest battleground states said race shouldn’t be a factor for Biden in choosing a running mate. The same poll found that nationwide Warren was the best known of any of Biden’s choices, but polarizing. Liberals liked her a lot, conservatives didn’t. But, importantly, the Times notes of Warren, “a majority of moderate voters had a somewhat or very favorable opinion of her.”

To be clear, Warren isn’t hiding that she would like to be picked. “Yes,” is the one-word answer she gave when asked in the spring whether she would accept Biden’s offer to serve as his running mate.

Biden has said he will make his decision by Aug. 1 and has pledged that it will be a woman. He may or may not pick Warren. That said, when this process began, many believed it was impossible for Warren to be picked, for many of the reasons listed above.

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As the process winds down it’s clear those initial thoughts were wrong. It is possible.


James Pindell can be reached at james.pindell@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @jamespindell.