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Elizabeth Warren cracking under the pressure of Trump’s ‘Pocahontas’ taunts

Elizabeth Warren cracking under the pressure of Trump’s ‘Pocahontas’ taunts

Trump controls Warren’s narrative and news cycles, and her frustration was palpable when questioned in national media about taking a DNA test.

Elizabeth Warren earned headlines this weekend after appearing on multiple news shows.

Warren wanted to talk about proposed changes to the banking laws, but was forced to defend her disputed claim to be Native American and how it would impact a possible run for president.

Warren was visibly shaken and angry at being pressed on the issue.

One of the headlines generated was that Warren says she is not running for president. But listen to her words very carefully. She does not rule out running for president in the future. She says “I am not running for president” or that she has “no intention” of running for president. That’s true in the present tense.

Even when Chuck Todd pressed her on the issue, Warren would not commit to serving out her full 6 year Senate term if re-elected next November:

This is classic Warren, and very Bill-Clinton-esque. She studies her script in advance, leaves herself outs through careful selection of tenses, and simply repeats her lines like a robot when pressed. It doesn’t matter how the question is phrased, her answer is the same.

My prediction? She’s going to run for president.

The second set of headlines has to do with Warren’s evasiveness when pressed on taking a DNA test to determine if she has any Native American ancestry. All available evidence says she is not Native American.

I discussed an issue the media is missing in a recent post, No, Elizabeth Warren cannot prove she’s Native American merely by taking a DNA test:

This claim that all Warren need do is show any Native American DNA, no matter how small, reflects a fundamental misunderstanding of Warren’s claim to be Native American for employment purposes. Under clear EEOC and Harvard standards, Native American ancestry would not be sufficient to claim Native American status for employment purposes, which is what Warren did.

Nonetheless, the issue of taking a DNA test is so simple that it is irresistible headline material.

The NY Post announced that Warren “refuses” to take a DNA test:

I don’t think that headline, or the many other similar headlines at other publications, is quite right. Warren isn’t refusing to take a DNA test, she just evades the question. No one seems to have asked her whether she already has taken a DNA test.


I know. Duly noted. Finally, I want to get you to respond to the Berkshire Eagle editorial. I know you’ve been asked about it before, but I’ll go ahead and put it up for viewers. “Were you to test positive” — They want you to take DNA test.”Were you to test positive for Native American DNA it would permanently resolve the issue, while possibly shutting down President Trump. Should the test come up negative, it would be an opportunity for the senator to perform an act rarely seen among politicians, an admission of her error and a full throated apology to Native American tribes and anyone else offended by her spurious claim.” What do you make of that idea?


So let me tell you the story of my family. My mother and daddy were born and raised in Oklahoma. My daddy first saw my mother when they were both teenagers. He fell in love with this tall, quiet girl who played the piano. Head over heels. But his family was bitterly opposed to their relationship because she was part Native American.They eventually eloped. They survived the Great Depression. The Dust Bowl. A lot of knocks. They raised my three brothers, all of whom headed off to the military, and me. And they fought. They loved each other. And most of all they hung together for 63 years. And that’s the story that my brothers and I all learned from our mom and our dad, from our grandparents, from all of our aunts and uncles. It’s a part of me, and nobody’s going to take that part of me away. [Transcript via NBC News]

JOHN ROBERTS, FOX NEWS: Well, I know that you’re looking ahead to November as opposed to 2020, but indulge me a moment here if you would. There are many people who are saying should you choose to run in 2020, and one of these groups is the Berkshire Eagle, Massachusetts newspaper that endorsed you in 2012, that the issue of your ancestry will come up and they’re suggesting that you put it to rest saying, quote: Elizabeth Warren should screw up her courage and take the spit test, a DNA test, a positive test would permanently resolve the issue while possibly shutting down President Trump.

Would you be willing to take a DNA test to put this issue to rest?

SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN: Look, let’s start again, where you started. I’m not running for president. But let me tell you a little bit about my family.

You know, my mom and dad were born and raised out in Oklahoma, and my daddy was in his teens when he fell in love with my mother. She was a beautiful girl who played the piano. And he was head over heels in love with her and wanted to marry her. And his family was bitterly opposed to that because she was part Native American.

And eventually my parents eloped and they survived the Great Depression, they survived the Dust Bowl. They went through a lot of hard times. They raised three boys, my older brothers all of whom went off to the military. They raised me.

They knocked around and it was tough but they hung together. They hung together for 63 years. I know who I am because of what my mother and my father told me, what my grandmother and my grandfather told me, what all my aunts and uncles told me and my brothers.

It’s a part of who I am and no one’s ever going to take that away. [Transcript via RCP]

Notice how Warren had prepared speeches to the easily anticipated questions about taking a DNA test. Her answer on Meet the Press was almost verbatim her answer on Fox Nws.

Please note, the story about her parents’ elopement because her mother was Native American has been substantially debunked. Cherokee genealogist Twila Barnes uncovered the wedding announcement for Warren’s parents in the local newspaper, and it reflected family joy and community celebration, completely inconsistent with Warren’s family lore.

Regardless of Warren’s story, the fact that she is being asked about taking a DNA test by Massachusetts newspapers and national media is a direct result of Trump’s repeated taunts calling Warren “Pocahontas.” Trump did it again in Pennsylvania Saturday night:

As I wrote when the “Pocahontas” taunts first started, Warren’s vigorous pushback and claims that Trump was racist was to no avail. Trump was branding Warren the way he brands all opponents, Trump branding of Elizabeth Warren as Fake Indian continues, expecting her to run in 2020:

Trump doesn’t attack his political opponents, he brands them. The brand for Jeb was “low energy.” For Rubio, it was “little Marco.” For Cruz, it was “lyin’ Ted.” Once branded, they could not shake the image.

Just ask “Crooked Hillary.” …

Trump is branding her. And being someone who was a fake Indian is her brand. She’ll never shake it.

And so it is. Warren’s media personality is dominated by her Native American problem. Even completely sympathetic types like Trevor Noah have seized on the issue even as they criticize Trump, Trevor Noah: “Elizabeth Warren did something problematic”.

Nothing Warren can do seems to help. Her fierce counterattacks that Trump is racist don’t achieve her goal. So recently Warren tried to embrace Pocahontas and to become a champion of the Native Americans she ignored her entire life, Elizabeth Warren bear hugs ‘Pocahontas’ — Will it work for 2020 presidential run?

As this weekend’s interviews reflect, Warren’s attempt to use the ‘Pocahontas’ taunt to her advantage have, if anything, backfired.

Warren no longer is the master of her narrative. Trump can drown out any other issues Warren wants to focus on any time he wants simply by calling her “Pocahontas.” That generates media coverage, and Warren’s flailing counterattacks simply prolong the news cycle.

Warren’s weekend interviews reflect that she’s cracking under the pressure of Trump’s taunts. It’s not a pretty picture.


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Lies without feathers.

    notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital in reply to NotKennedy. | March 12, 2018 at 3:51 pm

    If she were Native, which she isn’t, her name would surely be
    “Speaks Out of Every Side of All Four Cheeks!”

      notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital in reply to notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital. | March 12, 2018 at 4:04 pm

      Choice tidbit from that article the Professor linked in….

      “Historical evidence .. indicates ..Warren’s ancestors were afraid of Indians[56] and her great grandfather even shot an Indian, which was announced in the local paper.[57]

    guyjones in reply to NotKennedy. | March 12, 2018 at 9:40 pm

    “Dances without brains.”

    Rome44 in reply to NotKennedy. | March 13, 2018 at 8:48 am

    Much to do about nothing. Since when did we start requiring citizens to prove their heritage ? With Obama the birthers were at it until he produced his BC but he did as a courtesy certainly not required to do so.

“… and a full throated apology to Native American tribes and anyone else offended by her spurious claim.”

Nope, they don’t get it. I’m not offended. She can claim to be a Martian for all I care. I am offended by the con-job she pulled with the Indian story. She’s a fake and a liar. And even a full-throated apology—or any other kind—won’t change the fact that she’s a fake and a liar. The damage was done years ago and no matter how she sings and dances she can’t undo it.

It’s not a pretty picture.

Well, I’m enjoying it.

    Coolpapa in reply to tom_swift. | March 11, 2018 at 9:55 pm

    The only way to undo the damage (partially, but sincerely) would be to return every dollar she received as a result of the fraud. Any odds on the chances of that happening?

      Milhouse in reply to Coolpapa. | March 12, 2018 at 3:28 am

      There isn’t any evidence that she received anything from the fraud. The only job she’s even suspected of having possibly got on the strength of her false claim to “minority” status is the Harvard one, and the university claims not to have known about it until after it had already decided to hire her. I find this implausible, but it’s impossible to refute.

      She is certainly not known ever to have put herself down as a minority on a job application (which doesn’t mean she didn’t, just that if she did we don’t know about it).

        artichoke in reply to Milhouse. | March 12, 2018 at 8:43 am

        She was tenured at, I think, UT Austin law school before moving to Harvard. Both of them were after she “discovered” her native heritage. She did not apply to schools as a student with that minority status, as that would have required documentation she does not have. But for faculty hiring apparently the documentation is not needed.

        And thus, a graduate of Rutgers Law School winds up as a tenured professor at Harvard Law School. Anyone who understands the downward pressures in academia, and especially law which is all about prestige, know that’s only slightly more likely than tossing a stone in the air and having it carry all the way to the moon.

          Milhouse in reply to artichoke. | March 12, 2018 at 5:24 pm

          Nope. She was tenured at University of Houston Law Center from 1981. She was a visiting associate professor at UT in 1981, and returned as a full professor from 1983 to ’87, but I see nothing about tenure there. In 1987 she moved to the University of Pennsylvania Law School as a full professor, and got an endowed chair in ’90. She moved to Harvard in ’95.

          Her claim of minority status only lasted from ’86 to ’95, so it can’t possibly have played any role in earlier hiring decisions.

          It’s possible that Penn picked up on it right away and that it played a role in their decision to hire her away from Houston a year later. In fact that might have been why she thought of it in the first place; maybe in the course of negotiations they suggested “you don’t happen to be some kind of minority do you, because that would be useful”, and she remembered her family rumors and decided to put herself down as an Indian. But there’s no evidence for this.

          Massinsanity in reply to artichoke. | March 12, 2018 at 5:31 pm

          Her phony claim “only” lasted for 10 years… a mere blip in her career. And those 10 years happen to overlap with the time when she jumped from law school oblivion to the Ivy League… what a coincidence. It also happened to be during a time when the Ivy League law schools were under great pressure to diversify… another remarkable coincidence.

          The she dropped the Native American claim altogether once the tenured gig at HLS was in place.

          Nope, nothing fishy at all. I mean Charles Fried told me so. He would have no reason to cover for HLS’s “woman of color” would he?

          Milhouse in reply to artichoke. | March 13, 2018 at 4:15 am

          Again, there’s no evidence otherwise. Neither Penn nor Harvard will admit to it, and you can’t prove they’re lying.

          Massinsanity in reply to artichoke. | March 13, 2018 at 11:21 am

          skip, skip, skip…

        Massinsanity in reply to Milhouse. | March 12, 2018 at 2:08 pm

        Oh look, the broken record is back.

    Rome44 in reply to tom_swift. | March 13, 2018 at 12:23 pm

    Based on what, you admittedly know there is no proof either way, we only have her word. From where do you draw your conclusion ? On your feelings or wishes ?

She has a very grating type of voice, as bad as Hillary, where it’s difficult listening to her for any length of time. I can’t be alone in that assessment. Her partial vocal fry is like fingers on a chalk board.

Of course she is going to run for President, she is just looking to secure her Senate seat first. I would love to see her lose her seat, but mASSachusetts is stupid enough to reelect her and phony heritage. What a stupid sound bite with her saying mother and Daddy. Seems she has Daddy issues too.

    LindsayBoy Graham would probably support her. With McCain soon to be gone, NancyBoy will be looking for a person of character and virtue to replace the void.

    artichoke in reply to oldgoat36. | March 12, 2018 at 8:45 am

    The story was all over the Mass newspapers when she won the seat the first time, defeating a Republican. If she could overcome it then, she’ll be reelected now.

    She appears to have no friends in the Senate. But then neither did Obama.

      Tom Servo in reply to artichoke. | March 12, 2018 at 9:30 am

      She overcame it in the People’s Republic of Massachusetts. I don’t think she can pull that trick in flyover country.

      That top picture, “Trump broke me”, would also work with a picture of Rags. Sad!

Frank de Kova, known as Chief Wild Eagle, was a certified white, white guy from NYC, and yet he pulled off rather successfully the notion that was a Native Indian. Ever since I met him, watching F-Troop, I believed that he was a natural-born Hekawi.

Now sadly Frank/Chief has passed on. But Democrats are big on talking to the dead. Hillary has an inside track with Eleanor Roosevelt who apparently still roams the hallways of the WH. (DJT probably scares her and she’s probably hiding in the cellar.) And Democrats are big on carrying talismans of Obama in their purses to ward off evil spirits. (Not working too well apparently).

But maybe Poke-us-Haunt-us could arrange a seance with Chief Frank and ask how he was so successful in pulling of the genuine Native American gag. Or maybe she could try a marathon viewing session of F-Troop reruns.

Civility would have surrendered the field to Warren.

Just sayin.

She’s stuck between a rock and a hard place now over the DNA test. She knows that if she takes it and fails, she loses face. But not taking it and being evasive about it looks like she is hiding something, and then loses ALL FACE. Her only hope is that she can wait out the news cycle. But Trump is playing the Alinsky game, Rule 8:“keep the pressure on”.

The dirty little secret is that Democrats are unprepared to have their dirty little playbook turned against them, and Alinsky only coached offense.

    Paul in reply to Ironman. | March 11, 2018 at 11:03 pm

    I expect she has already taken a DNA test…several of them. And none gave the results she was looking for. If they had we would all know about it by now.

      Dave in reply to Paul. | March 12, 2018 at 6:29 am

      Nah, somebody would have leaked it by now.

        BobM in reply to Dave. | March 12, 2018 at 9:26 am

        Not necessarily. DNA tests are real cheap and don’t require picture ID. Off the cuff, I think the 23 and Me website does ancestry research through the mail.

        I have no doubt from the known time sequence she saw her chance at jumping on an affirmative action bandwagon to get ahead and took it. She plausibly may have had some verbal “family history” as a sort of basis, but actual family history makes her supposed verbal history unlikely to be true, and since she’s known to have never responded to repeated requests to join Amerind associations I suspect she knew that full well.

        If she HAD joined an academic Amerind group, she inevitably would have has to say HOW she knew she was Amerind, even if only when socializing. Whereas for employment and tenure purposes, apparently there’s no actual vetting of any sort – it being gauche or something to question.

    dmi60ex in reply to Ironman. | March 12, 2018 at 1:58 pm

    At least she won’t lose Paleface

The age of con men is almost over. Bye Mrs Crazy Loon.

I can see what Liz’s plans *were* but I can’t see what they are now. It’s like Trump being elected pushed her that one last inch off the sanity cliff.

She had *planned* on the CFPB being her ladder to greater positions, possibly SecState or another high cabinet position in the Hillary presidency. Maybe even if Joe dropped out of the VP spot, she could drop in, giving the Dems the ‘only Female/Female Pres/VP in history.’ Or at worst, getting a Hillary appointment to the CFPB dictator position and being able to arbitrarily fine companies for whatever she wanted and direct the proceeds to plum (D) donors.

Now Trump is President, the CFPB is being run by an (R) who refuses to direct stolen money to the ‘right people’ on the Left, and she’s stuck as a Senator who is rapidly losing value to the Party. She can’t draw funding like ‘Moneybags’ Clinton, she can’t preach Socialism to the kiddies like Bernie, and the Dems are testing the waters with a California liberal for their next Presidential run, leaving her all out in the cold.

    artichoke in reply to georgfelis. | March 12, 2018 at 1:37 pm

    And she’s not well liked among the senators. I’ve watched the Senate on CSPAN-2, and she just comes in, votes and leaves. The’s never a part of those conversational clumps among the Dems and among the Reps.

    She’s probably very boring in person, everything rehearsed, constantly acting on-edge and angry.

      artichoke in reply to artichoke. | March 12, 2018 at 1:39 pm

      Our country has been turned upside down by political correctness, and while one gets brownie points for being “minority”, one gets nothing for being descended from those on the Mayflower or other early settlers.

    MNCPO in reply to georgfelis. | March 12, 2018 at 6:44 pm

    Excellent analysis, her game plan is destroyed. She’s running on empty

The DNA test is a good headline, but the article is right that DNA alone would not be sufficient. Warren made a huge mistake by picking the Cherokee tribe because their history & membership is extremely well documented and the requirements for being able to claim membership today are very well established and based on a minimum of 1/16th ancestry.

It’s a trivial claim to check, and of course it’s already been done, and she didn’t pass. Which really isn’t surprising given that maybe 15,000 Cherokee ended up in Oklahoma in the early 1800s and by and large they tended to have children with each other. By comparison, about 30m+ people can claim to be related to 51 people on the Mayflower, since they and their descendants ended up all over the country.

Media should press her on getting places where she used her Indian “heritage” for employment to release her applications.

Of course she took a DNA test hoping by chance it would show some native American ancestry. It failed to confirm her claims so she ignores it.

“Warren was visibly shaken and angry at being pressed on the issue.”
More like realizing that she is not untouchable. Left eating left.

When I was a little girl my father told me that thunder was just my Great Great Grandfather Chief Thundercloud bowling. I’ve never claimed to be a Native American.

Maybe Rachael Dolezal can give Warren some pointers on changing your heritage.

OleDirtyBarrister | March 12, 2018 at 12:23 pm

Beware the woman with the crazy eyes.

Ole Lieawatha definitely has them.


Massinsanity | March 12, 2018 at 2:17 pm

I think now would be the perfect time for Trump to pivot away from Pocahontas to something more akin to Liewatha. He should acknowledge that Pocahontas was a true Native American hero and that comparing Warren to her is inappropriate since Warren is a plain, vanilla liar.

This would certainly put her over the edge.

Massinsanity | March 12, 2018 at 2:25 pm

One other observation from the wedding notice for her parents. In addition to proving that her Native American narrative is complete BS (and that she is willing to basically declare her paternal grandparents as racists), it also shoots holes in her contention that she grew up poor or on the “ragged edge of the middle class” as she has been know to say.

Both of here parents were attending college at the time of their wedding in the early 30s. While I couldn’t quickly find data for that time period, I did find data from the Census Bureau that in 1940 only about 5% of people age 25 and older had a Bachelor’s Degree or higher.

Educational attainment is a pretty good proxy for wealth so this would place her family at least in the top decile of families in America at that time.

Just more evidence that much of her personal narrative is fiction.

The larger issue is Warren is a wealthy elitist wacky limousine liberal hypocrite.

She strikes me as absolutely out of her ever lovin’ gourd.

Henry Hawkins | March 12, 2018 at 7:30 pm

She should go all in in the other direction and start claiming to be black, Asian and Hispanic, too, attributing it all to ‘inclusiveness’.

If I’m a big time liberal/Democrat donor considering Warren for president in 2020, I don’t give a dime unless she resolves this unresolvable mess she’s created for herself.

The Boston Herald has done a great job covering this story since 2012 led by Howie Carr but Michael Graham has a great column there today on why the DNA test is irrelevant. Nice compliment to Professor Jacobsen’s recent piece on the topic.

She is such a freak show. The stuff that nightmares are made of.

    elle in reply to elle. | March 14, 2018 at 2:24 am

    If I mess up and end up in hell, it will likely be that I have to look at this graphic of Elizabeth Warren for eternity.

Trump has completely neutered a major competitor in the 2020 race by simply pressing her on a known falsehood that the Democrats and their PR folks in the MSM have let her perpetuate for many years.

She lied and cheated to advance her career.

And with considerable success.

By simply flushing her out of the bushes on a very simple matter, President Trump has stopped that lie in its tracks.

She will never be able to escape it.

As an aside, does anyone really think that a President Jeb, Kasich or Rubio would have even bothered to pluck this low-hanging fruit?

Didn’t think so.