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Elizabeth Warren is not the Democrats' Ted Cruz

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 12:  U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) walks through the halls of Congress November 12, 2014 in Washington, DC. Congress returned to work today following last week's mid-term election break.  (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 12: U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) walks through the halls of Congress November 12, 2014 in Washington, DC. Congress returned to work today following last week's mid-term election break. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Conservative Twitter is upset, as it often is, by political bias at the Lamestream Media. Why isn't Elizabeth Warren's activism in killing the Cromnibus treated with the same contempt as Ted Cruz's effort to shut the government down in 2013?

There are a couple of things to say about this. One is that the "political terrorism" talking point is an overheated colorful analogy. There are probably too many violent war-like metaphors involved in political discourse in general.

The other is that the analogy between Warren and Cruz utterly fails.

Here's the difference. In 2013, Ted Cruz rallied Republicans behind the view that they should refuse to fund the government unless Obamacare was repealed. In 2014, Elizabeth Warren is attempting to rally Democrats behind the view that they should not agree to repeal a section of the Dodd-Frank bill as the price for funding the government. It is true that both Warren and Cruz defied the leaders of their parties. But the actual substance of the affair is reversed.

In 2013, Republicans demanded Obamacare repeal as ransom for funding the government. In 2014, Republicans are demanding partial rollback of Dodd-Frank as ransom for funding the government.

The 2014 "ask" from the GOP is much smaller than the 2013 ask. But the structural positions of the two parties have not flipped at all. It continues to be the GOP that wants to use government funding as leverage to undo policy measures Democrats enacted in the 111th Congress. In both 2013 and 2014, Warren didn't want to pay the ransom. The big difference is that the position of the White House has flipped. They saw Obamacare repeal as far too high a price to contemplate paying, but can live with the various concessions that live in the CRomnibus. It's interesting that Warren is defying the White House (not for the first time this winter, either) but she's still no Ted Cruz.

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