Photo of Elizabeth Warren

Remarks at the California Democratic Convention in San Francisco

June 01, 2019

[As prepared for delivery.]

Hello California Democrats!

I'm here because in 2020, we have a job to do: Beat Donald Trump.

But beating Trump is not enough.

We need to win up and down the ticket everywhere.

To do that, we need to show what it means to be a Democrat.

I'm Elizabeth Warren, I'm running for President of the United States—and I've got a plan to win.


For decades, the entire structure of our system has favored the rich and powerful. Pick any issue you care about and it's painfully obvious:

Tax loopholes favor the richest people and the biggest corporations

Environmental regulations benefit drillers and polluters

The racial wealth gap holds back families generation after generation

The list goes on: gun violence, healthcare, and housing costs are piling up around us.

These are enormous problems. But they are all connected to one thing: power that is concentrated in the hands of the wealthy and well-connected who help themselves at the expense of everyone else.

And some Democrats in Washington believe the only changes we can get are tweaks and nudges. If they dream at all, they dream small. Some say if we all just calm down, the Republicans will come to their senses.

But our country is in a time of crisis.

The time for small ideas is over.


Big problems call for big solutions. If we are going to save our democracy... build an inclusive economy... clean up the corruption in Washington, we need big, structural changes.

And yes, I have a plan for that.

When I'm President --

We will pass the biggest anti-corruption plan since Watergate. We will end lobbying as we know it. And we will make everyone who runs for federal office post their tax returns online.

We will break up big ag. We will break up big banks. We will break up big tech.

We will make it easier for workers to join a union.

And yes, we will pass a wealth tax. That's 2 cents on the dollar for people with fortunes worth more than 50 million dollars. That's the top one-tenth of one percent. They can afford two cents!

And what will we do with that money? Here are just a few plans for that...

Universal childcare for every baby age zero to five. Universal pre-K for every three year old and four year old.

We will make public college free, and put 50 billion dollars into our Historically Black Colleges and Universities

And we will cancel student debt for 95% of people carrying it.

When I lead the Democratic Party, we will not be a party that nibbles around the edges. Our Democratic Party will be a party of bold, structural change.

But bold, structural change doesn't happen on its own. We dream big and we fight hard. Because the rich and powerful aren't giving up anything without a fight.


I grew up out in Oklahoma in a paycheck-to-paycheck family. My daddy ended up as a janitor, but his baby daughter got the chance to become a public school teacher—can we hear it for our public school teachers? And if any of you have never met a public school teacher, know this about us—we aren't afraid and we don't give up.

Millions of grassroots Democrats aren't afraid. Millions of grassroots Democrats are ready to fight. But when it gets hard, when there's a lot on the line, too many powerful people in our party say settle down, back up, there's nothing to be angry about.

Wait for change until the privileged and powerful are comfortable with those changes.

Here's the thing: when a candidate tells you about all the things that aren't possible, about how political calculations come first, about how you should settle for little bits and pieces instead of real change, they're telling you something very important: they are telling you that they will not fight for you.

Not me. I'm here to fight.


When I lead the Democratic Party, we will be a party of moral clarity, a party of courage, and a party with backbone.

A party that says: we're the wealthiest nation in the history of the world, so yes, we can afford Medicare for All to save our people and a Green New Deal to save our planet.

A party that declares that we are, have been, and always will be a nation of immigrants and that immigration is our strength!

A party that believes no one is above the law, not even the President of the United States!

So if you're like me and think we need to be a party of big plans to make this country work for everyone, a party that has the courage to fight for those plans—then join me.

Text the word CHANGE to 24477. Help us organize. Volunteer. Donate five bucks.

But most importantly, be a Democrat with the courage to dream big. With the courage to fight hard.

Dream Big, Fight Hard—and win!

Elizabeth Warren, Remarks at the California Democratic Convention in San Francisco Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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