In a straw poll of activists, one-time darling of the movement Sen. Elizabeth Warren finished a distant fifth with less than 7 percent of the vote, giving her less than half the support of either Rep. Beto O’Rourke (16 percent) or former Vice President Joe Biden (15 percent). Finishing out the top five were Sen. Bernie Sanders (13 percent) and Sen. Kamala Harris (10 %).

The top vote-getter among MoveOn.Org members was “Someone Else/Don’t Know with 18 percent support. Straw polls are not scientific, but this one reflects what NHJournal is hearing from grassroots Democrats, who say they are in no hurry to pick a candidate and are looking forward to the campaign season.

“I can’t really name more than one or two people who are backing a candidate,” one Granite State Democratic insider told NHJournal. “Everybody else wants to be courted a little I think.”


A popular meme among supporters in 2015.

That may be, but it’s hard not to compare Sen. Warren’s soaring stature among progressives four years ago–they literally spent $1 million attempting to get her to #RunWarrenRun–as opposed to the lack of enthusiasm today.  It’s true that when presented Warren with 365,000 signed petitions, there weren’t nearly as many potential progressive candidates as there are today.  At the same time, if she’s made a positive impact on these activists over the past four years, she wouldn’t be struggling to get them on board.

Instead, her actions thus far have driven people away. Her DNA stunt, for example. Here’s Tina Nguyen in the liberal magazine Vanity Fair:

The stunt was meant to put Warren on the offensive—a pre-emptive strike to head off a presumed weakness in her autobiography—but instead betrayed a sense of defensiveness that Trump and his allies quickly seized on. It rubbed Native Americans the wrong way, made some liberals queasy, and worst of all, reeked of the sort of consultant-driven, Clintonian groupthink that drove 2016 voters crazy. It was the sort of misstep that politicians make when they are trying too hard—and, perhaps, when they’re worried about the competition breathing down their necks.

Whether it’s “trying to hard” or, as the Boston Globe suggested, “missing her moment,” Sen. Warren’s currently headed in the wrong direction. Here are the entire results of the MoveOn.Org straw poll:

Someone Else / Don’t Know 17.89%
Beto O’Rourke 15.60%
Joe Biden 14.95%
Bernie Sanders 13.15%
Kamala Harris 10.02%
Elizabeth Warren 6.42%
Sherrod Brown 2.92%
Amy Klobuchar 2.75%
Michael Bloomberg 2.71%
Cory Booker 2.63%
Joseph Kennedy III 1.90%
Stacey Abrams 1.16%
Kirsten Gillibrand 1.09%
Tulsi Gabbard 0.78%
John Hickenlooper 0.71%
Eric Holder 0.59%
Eric Swalwell 0.54%
Julián Castro 0.48%
Jeff Merkley 0.42%
Jay Inslee 0.38%
Andrew Gillum 0.36%
Mitch Landrieu 0.35%
Chris Murphy 0.33%
Tom Steyer 0.28%
Marianne Williamson 0.26%
Deval Patrick 0.24%
Eric Garcetti 0.20%
Richard Ojeda 0.18%
Steve Bullock 0.17%
Pete Buttigieg 0.12%
John Delaney 0.11%
Bill de Blasio 0.10%
Howard Schultz 0.10%
Terry McAuliffe 0.10%