adventures in language

Elizabeth Warren Isn’t Running for President in the Past, Present, or Future

DES MOINES, IA - OCTOBER 19: U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) campaigns for U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley (D-IA) on October 19, 2014 in Des Moines, Iowa. Braley is in a tight race for a Senate seat against Republican challenger Joni Ernst. (Photo by Steve Pope/Getty Images)
No. Photo: Steve Pope/Getty Images

One of the biggest unknowns of the 2016 presidential election concerns Senator Elizabeth Warren. What will it take for people to stop asking her if she plans to run?

The Massachusetts Democrat has been asked the question dozens of times, and is running out of new ways to offer variations on the same reply. 

She has “bluntly stated she is not running.” She has “bluntly said.” She has “said bluntly.” And plenty of people continue to believe she will run anyway.

She has said the words “I am not running” on at least five separate occasions. When she was asked why she never said “never,” she said, “I am not running for president. You want me to put an exclamation point at the end?” In January, after people had noticed that she had never said she would not run in the future, Warren was asked “are you going to run for president?” She said, “No.” But what did it mean that she did not use the future tense herself? Was she still going to run? This morning, Savannah Guthrie asked Warren if she was going to run on the Today show. “I’m not running,” she said, “and I’m not going to run.” 

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Only yesterday, she told WBUR the same thing in fewer words. 

However, there are likely tenses and literary devices that Warren has yet to explore before people will believe her. We look forward to hearing Warren explain that she will never have run for president and that she never has run for president.

Elizabeth Warren Uses Future Tense to Talk 2016