Ryan Grim at The Intercept has an argument for why the Snake Lady should have endorsed Senator Sanders last Friday. He says Senator Warren should do it not to help Sanders, but for her own sake:
But Warren’s real power with Biden rests in what she’s capable of doing to him politically, and for him politically — not in the goodwill a nonendorsement of Sanders might generate with the Biden camp.
Warren’s longterm threat to Biden and the party establishment is only as strong as her ties to the progressive movement, and the same is true of an eventual endorsement of Biden. Her value in a general election to Biden is her ability to bring Biden the progressive vote and help him unite the disparate wings of the party. Clearly, then, Warren is more valuable to Biden as an eventual endorser if she can actually bring progressives with her, and the most effective way she can do that is if she has endorsed and campaigned for Sanders.
The same calculation was true in 2016. Warren’s endorsement of Clinton would have been more valuable to Clinton had Warren originally endorsed Sanders, and would have had more of a unifying effect than it ultimately did. Had Warren endorsed Sanders first, she’d likely have been able to bring more Sanders people with her when she switched to Clinton.
Wait a minute, what kind of hot garbage is this? Sanders himself campaigned for Clinton, as he and his supporters are quick to remind everyone. So, if Sanders couldn’t bring his own people when he endorsed and campaigned for Clinton, how could Warren have done so?
The error in Grim’s logic results from conflating progressives with Sanders supporters, a common enough mistake inside and outside the progressive movement. Maybe what he’s really trying to say to Warren is this: progressives belong to Sanders, so endorse him now, or lose your political power. It’s a stick clumsily disguised as a carrot, but it’s more subtle than a snake emoji.