During a Monday night town hall in New Hampshire, a student asked Warren how the presidential hopeful plans to not get “Hillary’d” ― a phrase the student used to refer to the onslaught of sexist attacks Hillary Clinton received during her 2016 campaign.
Warren laughed at the student’s use of “Hillary’d” before referencing her 2012 senate race, which she won against incumbent Republican Sen. Scott Brown. The senator said she was encouraged by other Democrats to run against Brown, but most blatantly told her that she shouldn’t expect to actually win.
“People said to me you’re gonna lose because Massachusetts in 2011, according to conventional wisdom, was not ready to have a woman senator or governor,” she said. “We never had and people said it’s just not gonna happen. Not at least for another generation.”
Warren said the comments only made her more intent on winning the Senate seat, but that didn’t stop the sexist coverage of her campaign.
“I jumped in the race and, sure enough, the early coverage, it’s about what I’m wearing, it’s about my hair, it’s about my voice, it’s about whether or not I smiled enough — I didn’t,” she added, to laughter from the audience.
She said she was fully committed to making “something count every single day” of that race.
“Every day when I saw a little girl I would come up and I’d usually get down [on one knee] like a teacher, and I would say, ‘Hi my name is Elizabeth, and I’m running for Senate because that’s what girls do,’” Warren said to applause from the audience. “And then we would pinky swear to remember. And so, every night when I went home — no matter what the day had been like — I would count how many pinky swears we had done.”
Warren said she plans on using hard work and persistence, as she did in the 2012 senate race, to win the 2020 primary and election.
“We stay after it every day,” she said. “One might say you persist.”
This article originally appeared on HuffPost.