Elizabeth Warren got personal with a young queer voter during a recent campaign event.
During an appearance in Iowa on Sunday, the Massachusetts senator and presidential hopeful was given an unusual but interesting question by a 17-year-old high school senior called Raelyn.
“I was wondering,” she asked, “if there was ever a time in your life where somebody you really looked up to maybe didn’t accept you as much? And how you dealt with that?”
Elizabeth took the opportunity to open up about her first marriage, a topic she has rarely gone into detail over.
“My mother and I had very different views of how to build a future. She wanted me to marry well. And I really tried and it just didn’t work out,” she said, beginning to tear up.
“And there came a day when I had to call her and say, ‘This is over. I can’t make it work.’ I heard the disappointment in her voice. I knew how she felt about it. But I also knew it was the right thing to do.
“And sometimes, you just gotta do what’s right inside, and hope that maybe the rest of the world will come around to it. And maybe they will, and maybe they won’t, but the truth is, you’ve gotta take care of yourself first and do this.”
Elizabeth then invited Raelyn onto the stage for a hug before whispering comforting words to her.
“She was whispering in my ear, ‘It’s okay, we’ve got this, we’re gonna get through it’. She gives me a sense of hope and like she actually cares about what she’s talking about versus other candidates and politicians, they seem like they do it for the vote,” said Raelyn.
“But for her, it’s just this gut feeling you get where it’s like, ‘No, she actually cares about what she’s saying’.”
She later explained to CNN that she was nervous to ask the question because she identifies as LGBTQ, and while her immediate family know, her extended family (who were visiting for the holidays) don’t know.
“I was really nervous. Honestly, I was most nervous about, ‘OK, what if this is the question that gets aired on TV and then there’s a bunch of questions about it at home?'” she said.
“I loved it. I was scared. I didn’t want her to feel, almost, pressured to answer it, because I know being put on the spot and being on that big of a pedestal in front of America, it’s kind of like, you don’t want to put all of your personal information out there,” she said.
“You don’t want to have everybody see everything, every single side of you. And I was just really touched that she had the courage to answer that question in a different way than she has spoken before.
“And that she cared enough about me and about her for voters to be able to open up.”
Elizabeth was recently hailed as a ‘gay icon’ after delivering an epic response to a homophobic question.