Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D), a devout progressive, was confronted recently over her hypocrisy on America's top "one percent" of income earners. Her response said it all.
WRKO-FM host Jeff Kuhner confronted Warren in the hallway of a radio studio this week over her position on America's top "one percent," a group that Warren herself is a member of. The progressive senator regularly decries the "one percent" and says they don't "pay their fair share."
He asked: "You often say — and I agree with you — that the '99 percent' are getting shafted by the '1 percent.' Let me ask you this. A lot of people, especially my listeners, say you live in Cambridge. You have a $2 million mansion, plus you’re a multi-millionaire yourself. So how can you rail against the '1 percent,' when you are and live like the '1 percent?'"
How did Warren respond?
Warren explained her family's background: that she wasn't born in Cambridge, that her father was a janitor, that her mother worked at Sears and her brothers served in the military. Warren explained that finances were hard for her family.
But Warren dodged the question — so Kuhner pressed her on it.
One tense exchange
"But you are part of the 1 percent?” the radio host persisted. “You are a multi-millionaire and have a mansion in Cambridge, do you not? It’s worth north of $2 million."
"I had opportunities because America invested in kids like me," Warren responded. "And that’s the reason I’m in public office, so I can make sure the next kid..."
"Yeah, I know," Kuhner interrupted. "But you are part of the 1 percent and you’re railing on the 1 percent. You don’t see the hypocrisy there?"
"This isn't hypocrisy," Warren shot back. "This is about whether you believe in opportunity or not — and I believe in opportunity. And it's what I fought for."
Then, Warren's assistant ushered her out of the tense confrontation.
"You mean the $350,000 for one course?" Kuhner said as Warren walked away. "Is that what you mean by opportunity, senator?"