Leave it to Elizabeth Warren, one of Donald Trump's fiercest and most relentless critics, to serve up a shade-heavy silver-lining for his presidency.
"If the next three years and 261 days are like Donald Trump’s first 100 days," the U.S. Senator from Massachusetts told attendees at an Emily's List gala Wednesday, "I wonder if America will ever be ready for a male president again."
Warren, the event's keynote speaker, blasted Trump repeatedly during her remarks, while also calling on women to rise up to support the next wave of female leaders on the ballot.
"We are going to shatter the glass ceiling into so many pieces that the Donald Trumps, and the Mitch McConnells of the world will never be able to put it together again," she said.
The fiery Democrat's own potential White House ambitions are generating a lot of buzz in light of her new book tour and increased national profile, though she's repeatedly dismissed that she's planning a 2020 run.
Some of the biggest applause of the night was reserved for Maxine Waters, the longtime California congresswoman whose sharp criticism of the president — including calls for impeachment — have won a new fanbase among young members of the #Resistance.
After entering to the tune of Beyoncé's "Formation" ( "I slay... I slay."), Waters slammed Trump as a “disgusting, poor excuse of a man who is now the president of the United States of America.” The California Democrat pledged to keep fighting, no matter the costs.
“We are not simply frightened and intimidated beauty contestants,” she said. “My role and responsibility is to oppose, reject, fight this man — and resist every step of the day.”
Emily's List, which supports and trains pro-choice Democratic women for office, is one of a number of groups that has reported a huge increase in women gearing to run for office in the wake of the 2016 election. Multiple speakers Wednesday said the group has now received inquires from 12,000 women — more than it has trained in its history.
But amid the rallying cries were acknowledgements of the November defeat that still has the party, and many Democratic women, reeling. And the gala came at a tense time between the party and abortion rights advocates. Last month, a "Unity Tour" led by new DNC Chair Tom Perez and Sen. Bernie Sanders, came under fire from reproductive rights groups for including a rally for a Nebraska mayoral candidate who has supported legislation they consider counter to the cause. And earlier this week, House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi repeated her view that being a Democrat and supporting abortion rights are not mutually exclusive.
Emily's List President Stephanie Schriock shot back against arguments that the party should focus on other "economic issues" over reproductive rights access, saying they are one of the same. "We need to understand that the most important economic decision many women will ever make is whether and when to have children," she told the crowd.
Speaking to reporters before the event, U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth, said she does believe there is room to support some pro-life views and candidates in the party, but "they would have to be very nuanced in how they talk about these issues."
"We have a full range of folks," the Illinois Democrat said. "But at the end of the day, it’s about respecting each individual’s rights, and that means respecting women’s rights.”
Editor's note: This post has been updated.
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