Elizabeth Warren represented coal mining company

The Boston Globe reports on Massachusetts Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren's work for a major coal company: 

Warren ... helped write a petition to the US Supreme Court for LTV Steel in the 1990s, assisting the former industrial conglomerate in its fight against a congressional requirement that it pay millions of dollars into a fund for its retired coal miners’ health care. [...]

But Warren’s campaign argues that the retirees’ benefits were not in danger, even if LTV had won its legal battle. And it argues that she was fighting for a principle that could protect less powerful people who have claims against bankrupt companies. Warren had a small role, the campaign said, making about $10,000 to write a Supreme Court petition. Warren, through her campaign, declined an interview request.

Both Warren (D) and Sen. Scott Brown (R) are trying to position themselves as the candidate looking out for the little guy. One of Brown's strongest moments in their debate last week was when he attacked her for representing Traveler's Insurance in a case involving asbestos victims. While Brown's charges were misleading, the situation is complicated and Warren struggled to explain it during the debate. Her work for LTV Steel could prove similarly problematic.

Rachel Weiner covers local politics for The Washington Post.

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Felicia Sonmez · September 24, 2012