Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s past claims of Native American ancestry came back to haunt her once again during an interview on CNN’s “The Axe Files.”
The question of the day was “Why?” for the Massachusetts Democrat as she sat next to David Axelrod, a former adviser to President Obama, on Saturday. The host said he still couldn’t imagine what would drive her to “check those boxes” as a Native American when registering for the State Bar of Texas in 1986.
“I have to ask you about another family issue that you’re probably sick of talking about,” he said. “But this issue of your lineage and the Native American issue that has dogged you since your first Senate race. … The question I have never understood is why. Why did you in 1986 fill out on your law license or something? Why did you check those boxes, because obviously, that’s a very small part of your lineage? 1/32nd or something, so why did you do it?”
Ms. Warren — who hopes to become the Democratic Party’s 2020 presidential nominee — insisted that she made the claims out of “love” for her family.
“Based on what I learned growing up and the fact that I love my family, decades ago I sometimes identified as Native American,” she said. “It never had anything to do with any job that I ever got.”
“The universities kind of fudged and used you for their own purposes,” Mr. Axelrod interjected.
Ms. Warren then backtracked.
“I shouldn’t have done it. I’m not a person of color,” she said. “I am not a citizen of a tribe, but what I try to do is be a good friend of Native Americans.”
The CNN host then pivoted by asking about her ridiculed DNA test, which indicated a possible Native American ancestor six to 10 generations ago.
The 1/1024th Indian percentage is less than the average white person in America.
“I can’t go back,” the Democrat said. “But I am sorry for furthering confusion on tribal sovereignty and tribal citizenship and harm that resulted.”
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