Sen. Elizabeth Warren is preparing a robust, official launch to her presidential campaign in her home state of Massachusetts next week, followed by a six-state, cross country tour that will take her to four early presidential states, key southern states and to delegate-rich California, where an early primary is becoming an increasingly critical calculation to 2020 Democratic aspirants.
Warren’s live launch announcement will take place in Lawrence, Massachusetts from the steps of Everett Mills, the site of the 1912 “Bread and Roses Strike” where thousands of women walked off their factory jobs protesting working conditions and low wages.
Her event isn’t expected to match California Sen. Kamala Harris’ eye-popping, 20,000-strong crowd in Oakland, California last week.
But Warren’s flexing organizational muscle so far unmatched by other 2020 contenders. With an immediate tour of six more states after her launch, Warren will showcase an itinerary of events that put her in front of captive audiences where she personally interacts with voters, sometimes snapping photos afterward for more than an hour.
Since her New Year’s Eve exploratory launch, Warren held 15 campaign events organized by her campaign team, which itself was built out over a period of two years leading up to her announcement.
“There’s no question Warren is out front of the rest in terms of organization,” said former Barack Obama strategist David Axelrod. “She has scored some of the prized early-state organizers, is doing the kind of campaigning one has to do in the early states, and this follows a 2018 in which she was probably more active than any other candidate in contacting and assisting voters. It’s not determinative but it’s meaningful.”
More than three months after the widely criticized decision to release the results of a DNA test to prove her Native American ancestry, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., who is exploring a run for the presidency, has apologized to the Cherokee Nation, according to Julie Hubbard, a spokesperson with the Cherokee Nation.
"Senator Warren has reached out to us and has apologized to the tribe," Hubbard said in a statement. "We are encouraged by this dialogue and understanding that being a Cherokee Nation tribal citizen is rooted in centuries of culture and laws not through DNA tests. We are encouraged by her action and hope that the slurs and mockery of tribal citizens and Indian history and heritage will now come to an end." Warren's campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The Massachusetts Democrat initially released her DNA test results in October, indicating she has Native American ancestry dating back six to 10 generations. It was part of a highly choreographed move that included a video of family members in Oklahoma rallying to her ancestry defense. And it was an attempt to silence a controversy that has followed her for years.
Elizabeth Warren, the Massachusetts senator and potential 2020 Democratic presidential contender, identified her race as “American Indian” on her 1986 State Bar of Texas registration card to practice law in the state, The Washington Post reported Tuesday.
The card, filled out in blue ink and dated April 1986, is the first reported document to show Warren declaring herself American Indian in her own handwriting.
A source involved with Warren’s exploration of a 2020 campaign did not dispute the card’s authenticity. The card was not part of her application to the bar, the source told HuffPost; she had already been admitted when she filled it out.
In her own handwriting, Elizabeth Warren claimed Native American heritage. It's hard to imagine what she was doing if it wasn't to advance her career.
Warren used 'ancestry' for career advancement Why would Warren pretend to be an American Indian in the 1980s if later she downplayed the matter as a misunderstanding based on family lore? Fairly obviously it was for career advancement. Despite the current leftist mania to call out supposed “white privilege,” the fact is that even in the 1980s minority status could confer distinct advantages in hiring and promotion in career fields dominated by liberals for whom affirmative action is an article of faith. For any young academic, identifying as a Native American could be the key edge for landing important faculty slots. As the 1983 guidance from the American Association of University Professors noted, when it comes to filling academic positions, “in the interests of diversity, affirmative action considerations might control the final selection.”
A 2018 investigation by The Boston Globe found little to support the idea that hiring committees at various law schools where Warren taught openly discussed her alleged Native American heritage as a factor in bringing her on board. Yet, Harvard was quick to tout her as the law school’s first “woman of color,” of which Warren said she was unaware. She was identified as a minority winner of a teaching award at the University of Pennsylvania, apparently also without her knowledge. Maybe these schools did not discuss her supposed ethnicity, but they recognized and exploited it.
Yet whether you believe that diversity-hungry university departments completely ignored Warren’s unique supposed ethnic background, Warren was still trying to game the system. There is no other reasonable explanation for her sudden ethnic shift. She was never a member of a tribe, never lived as part of that culture or heritage, had no even incidental connection other than the alleged family story. It is hard not to conclude that she claimed she was a Native American to get a professional edge.
The troubling implications of bloodline identity This new evidence comes on the heels of Warren’s apology for the DNA test finding "strong evidence" that she had a Native American ancestor six to 10 generations ago. But “by blood” definition of racial identity has troubling implications; it was the tool of segregationists and underpinned the Nuremberg Race Laws in Nazi Germany.
“South Park” and “Portlandia” cleverly satirized people using fractional results of genetic tests to claim new awareness of their victim status. But there can be no meaningful definition of a cultural affiliation based on that factor alone. And DNA evidence is not accepted by the Cherokee Nation anyway, so the whole fiasco shows a terrible sense of judgment — and perhaps panic — on Warren’s part.
It is fair to speculate that Warren’s presidential campaign will soon be over. If Democrats want to nominate a progressive/socialist who will also be a standard-bearer for identity politics, they have other, more authentic choices available. As a nominee, Warren would have to spend the entire campaign explaining to people of color why her candidacy is not a standing indictment of the cynical abuse of affirmative action programs for personal gain. This would be in addition to having to demonstrate to moderates and conservatives why her outdated economic policies would not turn the United States into the next Venezuela.