Elizabeth Warren, User of Email, Is Ahead of Senate Colleagues

It turns out a lot of Senators don't do email.

Associated Press

Associated Press

She may be known as “Granny” in the pages of the Boston Herald, but Senator Elizabeth Warren is actually downright tech-savvy when compared to some of her Senate colleagues.

Ever since a scandal emerged around Hillary Clinton’s use of a personal e-mail address during her tenure as Secretary of State, there has been a focus on the email habits of government officials. On “Meet the Press,” Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina made the shocking admission that he has never actually sent an email before. He’s since endured much ridicule, but today, the New York Times followed up to point out that Graham is far from alone. Senator Chuck Schumer told the paper, “Maybe once every four months, I do one email.” Just in case you didn’t believe him, he made sure to use the verbiage “I do email” to remove any doubt. Senator John McCain said he avoids the practice, too.

The Senate’s embrace of smartphones has been one of slow adoption, too. According to a former aide, Senator Ted Kennedy never got the hang of a Blackberry.

Senator Edward M. Kennedy, Democrat of Massachusetts, could not use his BlackBerry “if his life depended on it.”

“When the Senate first distributed BlackBerries to members, he gave his to his assistant — and it was never seen from again,” Mr. Manley said.

Kennedy’s eventual successor, Elizabeth Warren, didn’t get a mention in the Times piece, but we do have evidence that she knows how to work a government email account. As if to make Clinton’s transgressions more damning, The Daily Caller published several emails that Warren sent from her Treasury Department email when she served as a special advisor there. And, hey, that was way back in 2010. Warren was ahead of her time!

Actually, Warren’s use of such emerging technologies as a government email address isn’t that progressive, even within the Senate. The New York Times report included quotes from plenty of Senators who sneered at their luddite colleagues.

“Yes, of course I email — I’m modern, I’m contemporary, I’m hot, I’m hip,” said Senator Barbara Mikulski, Democrat of Maryland, who at age 78 recently announced her plans to retire at the end of her term.

There you go. Warren’s got some company in the high-tech corridor of the U.S. Senate.

Update: Senator Ed Markey, too, seems ahead of many colleagues. “Yes, the Senator uses email,” Markey’s communications director writes in an e-mail. “And he uses an iPhone.”