Feb 26, 2020 - Politics & Policy

More than 200 Native Americans urge Elizabeth Warren to fully retract ancestry claims

Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

More than 200 Native Americans signed a letter asking Elizabeth Warren to fully retract her claims of Native American ancestry, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Why it matters: The authors, who include prominent activists like Daniel Heath Justice and Rebecca Nagle, write that her actions "have normalized white people claiming to be Native, and perpetuated a dangerous misunderstanding of tribal sovereignty."

The backdrop: Warren had long claimed that Cherokee ancestry was a part of her family's history and listed her race as "American Indian" on her registration card for the Texas bar in 1986.

  • After people contested the claims, the Massachusetts senator took a DNA test, which indicated that she is between 1/32 and 1/1,024 Native American.
  • An earlier Boston Globe analysis found that her ancestry was never a consideration during the hiring process at Harvard Law School, where she worked as a professor, or throughout her rise in the legal profession.

What they're saying: Warren sent a 12-page response to the predominately Cherokee authors on Tuesday night to both apologize and detail her plan to protect tribal lands and support Native Americans if elected president.

  • "I am not a person of color; I am a white woman, and that is how I identify. In addition, I am not a tribal citizen. Tribal Nations — and only Tribal Nations — determine tribal citizenship. It’s their right as a matter of sovereignty, and they exercise that in the ways they choose to exercise it," she wrote.

Read the letters:

Go deeper

Elizabeth Warren suspends presidential campaign

Photo: Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images

Elizabeth Warren is suspending her campaign after a poor performance on Super Tuesday, as first reported by the New York Times and confirmed by multiple other media outlets.

The state of play: Once thought of as a front-runner, Warren failed to win a single state during the biggest day on the Democratic primary calendar, even coming in third in her home state of Massachusetts behind Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Mar 5, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Warren to "assess" path forward after disappointing Super Tuesday

Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Sen. Elizabeth Warren is assessing her path forward in the 2020 race, a campaign aide tells Axios' Alexi McCammond.

Why it matters: Warren failed to win any states, including her home state of Massachusetts, and only amassed 12 delegates on Super Tuesday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Mar 4, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Sanders: Warren "changed political consciousness in America"

Sen. Bernie Sanders praised his former Democratic co-contender Sen. Elizabeth Warren after she dropped out of the 2020 race on Thursday, saying her ideas will outlive her campaign because she "has changed political consciousness in America."