Senator Elizabeth Warren is trying to get out in front of President’s Trump‘s frequent characterization of her as “Pocahontas” — the result of Warren’s having claimed a measure of native American heritage. Knowing the success Trump had with his base in questioning the validity of Barack Obama‘s birth certificate (AKA the Birther Movement), Warren has released findings from the ancestry expert Carlos D. Bustamante of Stanford University. The findings show that indeed Warren does have native American ancestry. Bustamante’s results “strongly support the existence of an unadmixed Native American ancestor.”
Those who question the findings will have the hurdle of Bustamante’s “genius” to contend with. In 2010, Bustamante was awarded the so-called “genius grant” by the MacArthur Foundation for his work in the field. (Perspective: While Bustamante was receiving acknowledgement for his work in 2010, Trump was working with singer Cyndi Lauper and disgraced Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich on Celebrity Apprentice.)
Warren tends to give as good as she gets on Twitter with her political rival Trump. But it has been hard for anyone to compete against the President’s persistent name-calling, one of his PR specialties. “Crooked Hillary” was a label Trump foil Hillary Clinton had particular trouble shaking, despite little evidence to back up Trump’s characterization. Warren hopes to avoid a similar problem, especially if she runs in 2020.