Elizabeth Warren, the Harvard law professor and former Obama administration official who oversaw the creation of the Consumer Financial Products Bureau, is edging closer towards a run for the U.S. Senate seat from Massachusetts currently held by Sen. Scott Brown.
Warren now has filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission for an exploratory committee for her potential run. She also has a barebones website that exists to collect emails and donations.
Warren, who became a lightning rod for congressional Republicans and financial industry officials who saw her as hostile to Wall Street and capitalism itself, has been traveling Massachusetts for the past week as part of the obligatory listening tour would-be candidates do before they become official candidates.
Glenn Johnson of the Boston Globe's Political Intelligence blog reports:
The state Republican Party released a new statement today labeling Warren "a militant liberal" and detailing a statement she made last year in which she said if her agency was not created, "my second choice is no agency at all and plenty of blood and teeth left on the floor."
The National Republican Senatorial Committee joined in, criticizing her listening tour as the two groups raced to define her even before any formal announcement of candidacy.
"As a native of Oklahoma, the anointed candidate of the Washington establishment, and someone who has spent many years ensconced in the hallways of Harvard, it's a good idea for Professor Warren to learn more about her adopted state of Massachusetts as she prepares to compete in a crowded Democrat primary," the committee said in a statement.
There are already seven Democrats who have declared they are running in next year's party Senate primary. Warren, though, is the favorite of national Democrats concerned none of the existing candidates can effectively challenge Brown, who shocked the party in 2010 by winning the special election to replace Kennedy, a party icon.