Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) was the preferred candidate among wealthy white liberals with college degrees and a profound sense of moral superiority. Accordingly, she was the preferred candidate among members of the mainstream media.
"I’m a highly educated white person, and most of my friends and acquaintances are also highly educated white people," writes Vox senior correspondent Matthew Yglesias. "Elizabeth Warren is very popular with people like us."
Warren's supporters in the media and elsewhere were not only disappointed by her failure to win the support of regular Democratic voters, many were also dumbfounded and in need of a comforting explanation. It didn't take them long to find one.
Sexism. "Elizabeth Warren Could Never Escape The Baggage Of Being A ‘Female Candidate,'" reads the headline in a recent Huffington Post article on Warren's downfall. The Associated Press lamented that Warren's exit from the Democratic primary was "a final blow to hopes, once so bright, that a woman would be chosen to face President Donald Trump in November."
Here’s what I said on @msnbc earlier about Warren dropping out of the presidential race.
After having more women in the race than ever only to end up with two old white guys, it’s clear we gotta actually talk about sexism and prioritize representative leadership. pic.twitter.com/1kJLQaxmD6
— Zerlina Maxwell (@ZerlinaMaxwell) March 6, 2020
Sen. Kamala Harris (D., Calif.), another media darling who failed to generate support among actual voters, said the fact that a woman would not win the Democratic nomination this year suggested "there's still a lot of work to be done to make it very clear that women are exceptionally qualified and capable of being the commander in chief of the United States of America."
Harris, for what it's worth, declined to endorse Warren or Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D., Minn.) after ending her campaign in December. The New York Times reported in January that Harris was likely to endorse Biden.
Sexism was also a frequent topic of media conversation following Hillary Clinton's historic failure to become the first female president in 2016, almost entirely as a result of her own historic deficiencies as a candidate and as a person. This time, however, its Democratic voters who are being accused of holding sexist views toward female candidates.
I’m glad there’s on open acknowledgment abt the role sexism played in Warren’s campaign, bc I can’t tell you how many people on this website *adamantly* insisted sexism had nothing to do w/ Hillary’s loss
— Eric Boehlert (@EricBoehlert) March 6, 2020
Well, @ewarren is out. Once again, Democrats have rejected a qualified woman who didn't meet their pubescent fantasy of a woman.
Dems will never find their "perfect" woman, but Republicans will. GOP embraces their sexism. Dems refuse to confront their own.https://t.co/0T2nT4pXOt
— Elie Mystal (@ElieNYC) March 5, 2020
Warren's exit, however, does not mean there are no women left in the race for the Democratic nomination. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D., Hawaii) persists in her campaign and recently picked up two convention delegates in American Samoa on Super Tuesday. Nevertheless, the Democratic Party on Friday announced a series of rule changes that will effectively disqualify her from the upcoming primary debate in Arizona.
President Donald J. Trump also weighed in on Warren's failed candidacy. He had a somewhat different take. "I think lack of talent was her problem," said Trump on Friday. "She is a very mean person and people don't like her."