WINDHAM — U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Massachusetts, stood in the shade on a porch Friday at a Windham home.
More than 150 people — evident from the cars lining the street with plates from New Hampshire and Massachusetts — listened to on the presidential candidate's plans for what might happen if she is successful in her presidential run.
She was welcomed onto the deck by the homeowner Alexandra Barker and her 11-year-old son Ricky. Barker is a fan of Warren, particularly when it comes to her education-funding program. And she was glad her son, who doesn’t particularly like crowds, wanted to speak at the event.
“If things don’t change I’ll have to sell this home for him to go to college, and I’ll have to figure out where to live,” Barker said.
Warren told the crowd about her background — a daughter of an Oklahoma janitor who grew up to be a teacher, a lawyer, a senator and a candidate for president. She used the story of her mother applying for her first job to explain why she built a career on examining income inequality.
“I don’t want a country that works for a bunch of multinational corporations,” she said before launching into her plan to get money out of politics.
Warren talked about implementing a lifetime ban on representatives, senators and presidents becoming lobbyists. She also wants to overturn the Supreme Court’s decision in the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission case that allowed corporations to donate money to political campaigns.
She also talked about restructuring the economy, explaining her wealth tax that would fund a variety of education programs, including pre-kindergarten and college programs.
The wealth tax would be on the top 1%, she said, explaining it as 2 cents for every dollar a person had above $50 million.
Warren was asked by Cathy Spinney, 61, of Pelham how she might be able to get these ideas made into law. Spinney is concerned that a dysfunctional legislative branch would hinder any future president’s ability to make change, she said.
Warren explained that she wanted to build a movement that would have momentum after Election Day 2020. She would use things like executive orders in her first days as president to not allow oil drilling on federal lands.
“There are things a president — I love saying this — can do herself,” she explained.
As for legislation, she would start with working on stuff that a majority of people agree about. She said she hopes those changes would also provide some of the healing for the country she said.
No stranger to awkward Thanksgiving conversations — only one of her three brothers is a Democrat — she said she believed that Americans all want essentially the same thing.
One of Warren’s major policy proposals is forgiving student loan debt. The 43 million Americans it would help are “a big army,” she said.
Spinney agreed with Warren’s policies, although she is still undecided as a voter.
One of her sons still lives with her because of his debt, and her other son lives in a small apartment with his wife and two children because of their debt, she said. She sees her children working hard and not making ends meet easily.
“Working to the sweat of their brow full time should be able to pay for a safe, healthy, basic life and the harder you work you can build on that,” Spinney said.
The Republican National Committee was not thrilled by the Senator’s return to campaigning in New Hampshire this weekend.
“Elizabeth Warren’s pipe dream proposals would raise taxes and wreak havoc on New Hampshire’s economy. Instead of tax-raising proposals, the Granite State is counting on good deals and policies like the USMCA (United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement), and Warren’s opposition to the deal speaks volumes,” wrote spokesman Nina McLaughlin in an email. “In the meantime, Granite Staters are thriving in President Trump’s booming economy, and are ready to flip the state for him in 2020.”