Damian Dovarganes, Associated Press
U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks at the California Democrats State Convention in Anaheim, Calif., on Saturday, May 16, 2015.
They attacked wages. They attacked pensions. They attacked health care. They attacked unions. (Republican policies) attacked all the pieces that had built Americas great middle class —Elizabeth Warren

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Democrat Elizabeth Warren warned Saturday that Republican policies being promoted by its emerging presidential field would create an "American nightmare" that would crush opportunities for students and workers, deepen wage inequality and favor Wall Street banks and huge corporations.

Warren's speech before several thousand party loyalists at a California Democratic convention in Anaheim was greeted with thunderous cheers while scores of delegates waved signs emblazoned with her name.

The Massachusetts senator and favorite of the party's left wing ridiculed the GOP's potential 2016 field, including Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who has proposed a double-digit cut in state aid for higher education.

Warren said Walker's idea of leadership was "cut taxes for billionaires and giant corporations and then say there is no more money for anybody else."

She faulted President Ronald Reagan, a former California governor who lived in Los Angeles, for what she said was a three-decade assault on the middle class.

"They attacked wages. They attacked pensions. They attacked health care. They attacked unions," Warren said. Republican policies "attacked all the pieces that had built Americas great middle class."

"Trickle-down economics was nothing more than political cover for helping the rich and powerful get richer and more powerful," she said.

Warren warned that proposals coming from potential 2016 Republican contenders would continue to spread income inequality that has concentrated wealth within the nation's super-rich. "That's not the American dream. That's the American nightmare," she said.

The crowd was sprinkled with supporters wearing "Warren for President" hats. While liberals have help out hope she would enter the 2016 contest, she has said repeatedly she is not interested in the White House.

Warren also kept up her criticism of a proposed Pacific trade pact that has divided President Barack Obama and Democrats on Capitol Hill — she was wearing a "Stop Fast Track" sticker on her jacket.

"America should not sign trade deals that benefit huge corporations," she said.