I get the feeling that Elizabeth Warren is heading for an Edmund Muskie moment completely of her own making, unless those close to her step in soon.
I don’t expect Warren to take advice from her political opponents, but she just can’t seem to take good advice even from her political friends.
The latest advice for Warren to come clean on her supposed Native American ancestry comes from Massachusetts Democratic Congressman Stephen Lynch, via The Hill:
“There has to be an answer for this at some point, something that’s full and comprehensive and has some closure to it as opposed to the way it’s been dragged out — like water torture,” Lynch said late Thursday afternoon.
Asked if Warren and her campaign should put out all the information to put the story to bed, Lynch said “they probably should have done that probably four weeks ago.”
“I think you just need to get it out there, lay your cards out on the table and then you can move on,” he said. “But feeding a little bit of information every week or so, that’s just keeping it going and it’s taken on a life of its own at this point. If they want it to go away they need to address it. They can’t pretend it’s not there which is the approach they’ve been taking thus far.” …
“That’s all I hear people talking about. They’re not talking about the fact that she is a bona fide consumer advocate, they’re talking about this stuff. You hope that the narrative of your campaign will be one that showcases your strengths, and she has a lot of strengths. She does. I’ve seen her work firsthand, and we’re not getting to that because she’s not getting past this issue.”
Her response to this friendly advice? The same robotic line her campaign has been giving almost every day for a month:
“Elizabeth Warren is focused on the issues important to Massachusetts families who are getting hammered,” Warren campaign spokeswoman Alethea Harney told The Hill when asked about Lynch’s criticism.
A lot of Democrats want to shake Warren and say “snap out of it.” But there appears to be no snapping out of Warren’s refusal just to acknowledge that she’s not Cherokee.
Despite the mountain of evidence that she is not Cherokee, Warren persists, releasing this statement just two days ago:
My Native American heritage is part of who I am, I’m proud of it and I have been open about it.
And again in an e-mail blast to supporters:
My mother, grandmother, and aunts were open about my family’s Native American heritage, and I never had any reason to doubt them. What kid asks their grandparents for legal documentation to go along with their family stories? What kid asks their mother for proof in how she describes herself?
My heritage is a part of who I am — and I am proud of it.
In an interview with the Globe released today, Warren again stands by her claim:
On the phone, she spoke sometimes expansively and without the slightest hint of apology about her conviction that she has maternal roots from the Cherokee and Delaware tribes. “I know who I am,’’ Warren said. “I know my heritage.’’
A moment later, in response to a question over whether she took any professional advantage of her self-identification as Native American, she said, “I won’t deny who I am, I won’t deny my heritage, but I didn’t ask for anything because of it.’’
Everyone around her sees what’s happening with her ludicrous denials and attempts to change the subject, including Chris Cillizza of The Washington Post, hardly a Scott Brown promoter:
Not long ago, we encouraged Elizabeth Warren to stop digging herself into a hole. She’s still digging.
Jonathan Turley, again not a Brown promoter, notes that even the law professor community has become obsessed with Warren’s strange boasts, including that she was the first nursing mother to take the New Jersey Bar exam:
This morning three different law professors sent me this video of U.S. Senate Candidate and Harvard Law Professor Elizabeth Warren claiming to be the first nursing mother to ever take the bar exam. One of the professors, who is a liberal academic, noted that she knows that claim to be untrue from personal experience.
Instead of coming to grips with reality and the truth, Warren is doubling down on playing the victim, accusing Scott Brown for a second time of insulting her parents:
Elizabeth Warren lashed out at U.S. Sen. Scott Brown today – saying the Republican incumbent should apologize for insinuating that her parents weren’t truthful when they told her about her Native American heritage.
Brown told reporters, “My mom and dad have told me a lot of things, too, but it’s not accurate.”
“Scott Brown’s comments about my parents are totally out of line. I resent him questioning their honesty. My mother and father are not here to defend themselves and should be off limits. Don and Pauline Herring are not fair game and Scott Brown should apologize,” she wrote.
Brown’s camp shot back today saying Warren is the one out of line.
“This is the second time Elizabeth Warren has made this pathetic and baseless accusation in an attempt to escape personal responsibility for spending five weeks misleading the press and the public,” said Brown spokesman Colin Reed. “With so many new questions piling up, she would be wise to come clean, stop the stonewalling and tell the truth, rather than making up frivolous and false attacks against Scott Brown.”
Warren has built her entire narrative around lore her parents supposedly told her. Warren is the one who put her deceased parents at issue. Assuming they actually told her all the things she attributes to them (we’ll never know, will we), they were wrong. It’s been proven, time and again in the past month.
Only in the world of Elizabeth Warren is correcting an inaccurate fact she attributed to her parents considered an attack on her parents.
And in defending herself in The Globe interview linked above, Warren again put her parents at issue in a way that is not verifiable because everyone who would know is dead:
“In the 1930s, when my parents got married, these were hard issues,’’ Warren said. “My father’s family so objected to my mother’s Native American heritage that my mother told me they had to elope.
[Note - this new claim about her parents eloping because her mother was Native American will be the subject of fact checking, I'm sure. A quick Google search turned up no prior instances when she has said this publicly.]
There is a deer in the headlights quality to Warren. She seems frozen in a narrative which does not exist of this world, via the Globe:
“It’s who I am, it’s how I grew up. It’s part of the home I grew up in. It’s me, part of me, through and through. I can’t change that.’’
Update: Michael Patrick Leahy of Breitbart.com already is fact checking the story about Warren’s parents eloping.