Female Fights: #2 Elizabeth Warren

Vera H-C Chan
Senior Editor, Special Projects
A record number of women will be headed to the Capitol in 2013. Among them is Elizabeth Warren, who beat incumbent Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown in one of the most expensive races of the year. (Yoon S. Byun/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

In 2012, women put up a good fight to defend their interests, even as others fought for their favor. Here are the year's top female fights, as measured by search volume and percentage spikes compared with 2011 on Yahoo!.

No matter which side people took in the election, there was one clear mandate: The time for women was now. Women waded into the fray—more like an all-out melee complete with machetes and sharpened brass knuckles. Few winners were more high-profile than Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, embroiled in a near-$68 million Senate race against incumbent Scott Brown. The Harvard professor had achieved national status for her work on TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program), which included grilling Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner over the AIG bailout, and losing out on heading the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which she had created.

A win was never assured, given Brown's popularity and the tempest over her undocumented Cherokee roots. A shift happened mid-September, following Warren's appearance at the Democratic National Convention, some Brown campaign missteps that included an apology for Indian war whoops to the Cherokee Nation, and a renewed TV ad barrage.