Democrat Sen. Elizabeth Warren has been criticized over her claim of Native American ancestry, and now one Cherokee genealogist in particular is publicly dismissing her assertion.
On Wednesday, genealogist Twila Barnes called Warren’s claims “ludicrous” and argued that the Massachusetts Democrat had no “respect for true Native Americans,” according to The Washington Times.
Barnes has devoted herself to extensive research into Warren’s family tree as she searched for the claim the Democrat senator insisted was there; however, no evidence pointed to its actual existance.
Barnes also stated that Warren, in her effort to further a high-profile career, has done a thorough job of angering many Native Americans throughout the U.S. by claiming the dubious heritage.
“Some just laugh, because it’s so ludicrous. I mean, you know, she has no proof of anything,” Barnes told Fox News’ Tucker Carlson.
“She’s a lawyer, and she’s supposed to understand you need proof, yet she keeps claiming,” said Barnes, whose own research is published on the website “Thoughts from Polly’s Granddaughter.”
“Many are angry because they feel like she’s appropriating an identity to gain something from that,” she added. “And she has no respect for true Native Americans.”
The claims from Warren had essentially come back to haunt as she seeks re-election in 2018, as the controversy was again spurred by President Donald Trump’s “Pocahontas” remark during an event honoring Navajo veterans.
Warren and others throughout the nation decried the remark as a “racial slur” and demanded an apology from the president in the name of further respect for Native Americans.
Just last week, failed attempts to get the Massachusetts Democrat to take a DNA test in order to prove her heritage had been made, though all have been rejected as Warren doubled down on her claim.
“It’s a part of me and nobody’s going to take that part of me away,” she told host Chuck Todd for NBC‘s “Meet the Press.”
However, some suggest that Warren’s hesitation to prove herself of Indian heritage might actually benefit her in the long run — whether or not she truly is what she claims to be.
“If the Native American ancestry is more than a few generations back, it might not be detectable,” genetic genealogist Ann Turner told The Washington Post.
Turner added that, although the evidence of Native American ancestry could be informative, a negative result wouldn’t rule it out.
“Also, many people who self-identified as Native American a few generations back were already admixed, making it even less likely to be detected.”
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