Elizabeth Banks Headlines Woke Hollywood Fundraiser for Warren

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Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-MA) campaign is set to hold the first fundraiser of her campaign in the Los Angeles area on Saturday, which is expected to draw the likes of celebrities such as Elizabeth Banks, Busy Philipps, Ben Feldman, and others in the entertainment industry.

Warren has prided herself on running her campaign on small-donor contributions, and she managed to raise an impressive $19.1 million in the second quarter and $24.6 million in the third quarter without the help of fundraisers. However, she reportedly used $10.4 million in leftover funds from her 2018 Senate campaign – a time she courted big donors and attended fundraisers – to cushion her presidential bid.

“To sum it up: We raised more money than any other 100% grassroots-funded campaign. That’s big,” Warren campaign manager Roger Lau said in July.

“You sent a message that Elizabeth’s vision for the future is worth fighting for. And you showed the rich and powerful that change is coming – sooner than they think,” he added.

However, that is about to change, as the Warren campaign is set to hold its first fundraiser, which will reportedly draw a number of “rich and powerful” guests.

According to an invite obtained by ABC News, Warren will not be in attendance, but the fundraiser will have:

…lots of co-hosts from the entertainment community, a life-size cutout of Elizabeth, pastrami and burritos and — debuting at this event — a video station where you can opt to tell the campaign why you love Elizabeth and what issues attracted you to the campaign.

There is no minimum contribution to attend – an important detail for a candidate who prides herself on small grassroots support. Nevertheless, ABC News notes that this particular event has a different flavor due to the influential, high profile guests it is attracting from the entertainment industry – a signal that Warren is looking to garner more public support in Hollywood in hopes of boosting her public image as the primary election draws closer:

It’s not uncommon for campaigns to host fundraising events in the candidate’s absence, but what distinguishes this event is the star-studded guest list. Among those expected to be in attendance are actor-comedians Jon and Ike Barinholtz, TV writer-producer Marti Noxon, writer and Crooked Media cohost Kara Brown, actress Elizabeth Banks, actor Ben Feldman, comedian Travon Free, author Jenny Han, director Alexandra Kondracke, film producer Franklin Leonard, playwright Janine Nabers, writer Christopher Noxon, actress Busy Philipps, actress Angela Robinson and actor-comedian Adam Scott.

ABC adds that Warren is likely refraining from making an appearance in order to leave her “plausible deniability for any pay-for-play face time with donors.” She is expected to campaign in New Hampshire on Saturday.

Banks, who is expected to attend Warren’s event, recently made headlines after blaming the Charlie’s Angels flop on sexism. She also recently announced her role as the “Creative Council” of the Center for Reproductive Rights in an effort to encourage people to “share stories that are ‘destigmatizing abortion.’”