At a closed-press event on Mulberry Street, Elizabeth Warren rallies the ‘nerds’

Warren at a fund-raiser on Mulberry St. ()
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Elizabeth Warren appeared before a raucous crowd of small donors at the Openhouse Gallery on Mulberry Street last night for a low-dollar, closed-press event hosted by the Progressive Change Campaign Committee.

"Scott Brown and I now have two plans, two competing plans for how to win the Senate race in Massachussetts," she told crowd of around 200 supporters. "Scott Brown's plan is to attack me personally. OK." 

When the crowd booed, Warren playfully told them to "come on." 

"My plan is really simple," she said. "I'm going to talk about how he votes. Don't talk about the pickup truck, don't talk about the barn jacket."

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Warren became a favorite of some of New York's top liberal donors after she swept into the Massachusetts Senate race last fall, but the event last night was an attempt to cash in on her broader appeal with younger progressives. Tickets started at $100, which included an open bar of either red or white wine and some finger foods, and the host committee included a co-creater of "The Daily Show," a comedian formerly of "The Onion," and the Working Families Party executive director Dan Cantor.

Among the attendees was Sarah Silverman.

Reporters weren't allowed into the event, but one of the attendees provided a recording of her speech to Capital.

According to the attendee, the crowd of small donors was a boisterous one, with many of the people there taking pictures and video of Warren with their phones.

"I love it when the nerds in the crowd start getting into it," she said, as they cheered her call for more government investment in research.

She talked about how Democrats had tried to warn her about how Republicans would treat her in such a tough race—"they'll make your life miserable, they'll make your family's life miserable, they'll make your dog's life miserable"—and said Democrats needed to get a better pitch for prospective candidates.

Discussing Brown's voting record over the course of his time in the Senate, she called it "a good reminder of what's happened in Washington the last two years."

She said he had voted against job creation, the environmental regulation, requirements of equal pay for women, and the confirmation of Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court.

Brown had "one chance to confirm a pro-choice woman to be a Supreme Court justice and he voted no," Warren said. 

"I want to go to Washington—this is going to be a real shocker in 2012—to stand up for equal rights for women," she said.

She drew some laughs when she said her opponent was "named by Forbes magazine as one of Wall Street's favorite senators," and that she was unlikely to win that award.

Warren also invoked specter of a Senate controlled by Republicans, naming climate-change-denying Oklahoma Republican James Inhofe in particular as a threat to take over the oversight of important federal agencies like the E.P.A.

Warren, whose campaign has been dogged by questions about whether she rightfully claimed Native American heritage and, more recently, about her law license, attempted to draw a contrast between the tone of her campaign and Brown's.

"So we're going to have some fun out there," she said. "He's going to keep throwing whatever he can throw. And I'm going to keep doing that outrageous thing of talking about his votes."