Sen. Elizabeth Warren: Democrats need to ‘get off our rear ends’ and address costs

Sen. Elizabeth Warren said Sunday that Democrats will be in “real trouble” in this year’s midterm elections unless they take tangible steps to tackle soaring costs and make the economy work for regular Americans.

The Massachusetts Democrat said she understands why President Biden is touring the country to trumpet accomplishments but added that Americans will expect lawmakers to make big changes as inflation hits a 40-year high.

“If we do it over the next 200 days we’re going to be in fine shape,” Mrs. Warren told CNN’s “State of the Union.” “I think we’re going to be in real trouble if we don’t get up and deliver.”

She said outlined a few moves Democrats should make. She said they should tackle price-gouging, arguing that big corporations are taking a “big dollop of extra profits” amid the fog of supply-chain problems following the pandemic.  

She said Congress should pivot power from corporate interests to constituents by prohibiting lawmakers from trading stocks. She also said the government should cancel student loan debt, saying it would benefit “tens of millions” of American families.

Canceling debt is a popular idea on the progressive left, but centrists and others worry it would send the wrong message to people who paid off loans while failing to address the underlying problem of soaring college costs.

“It is the responsibility of Congress, of the president to get out there to make the changes we need to make to bring down those prices for families,” Mrs. Warren said. “We have to get up off our rear ends and make it happen.”

Mr. Biden has blamed Russian President Vladimir Putin for higher gasoline prices, in particular, as the world cuts off Russian energy supplies over the invasion of Ukraine.

But Republicans say the president has himself to blame for failing to unleash American energy sources to backfill the shortfall. They also say the $1.9 trillion virus-relief plan the Democrats passed last year overheated the economy, driving inflation as people suddenly had more cash for goods that were in limited supply.

Mrs. Warren defended the package, saying it helped to wrangle the virus and save small businesses.

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