On her first full day on the Iowa campaign trail, presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren could not escape the issue that has haunted her since President Donald Trump gave her the racist nickname “Pocahontas” — her decision to take a DNA test in an attempt to prove her Native American ancestry.
At a rally in Sioux City, a questioner asked Warren, “Senator Warren … Why did you undergo the DNA testing and give Donald Trump more fodder to be a bully?”
Trump has frequently ridiculed Warren for taking the test and most recently tweeted out a fake bumper sticker mocking Warren’s claims of American Indian heritage.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2019
“I am not a person of color,” Warren responded. “I am not a citizen of a tribe. Tribal citizenship is very different from ancestry. Tribes — and only tribes — determine tribal citizenship, and I respect that difference.”
Speaking about why she chose to take the test, which drew criticism from Native Americans, Warren said she was acting in the interest of transparency. “A lot of racial slurs and a lot of ugly stuff, and my decision was I’m just going to put it all out there. All my hiring records. Including the DNA test. It’s out there. It’s online. Anybody can look at it,” she said.
As for whether her actions emboldened Trump, Warren said, “I can’t stop Donald Trump from what he’s going to do. I can’t stop him from hurling racial insults. I don’t have the power to do that.”
The candidate then turned the conversation to the crux of her campaign message: “What I can do is I can be in this fight for all of our families. What I think 2020 is going to be about is not my family, it’s about the tens of millions of families across this country who just want a level playing field.”