Elizabeth Warren: Trapped in Web of Lies

by Nathan Harden - Fix Editor on May 31, 2012

The Harvard Law professor and Massachusetts Senate candidate now admits that she told Harvard she was Native American. She previously said she didn’t know how she came to be listed as Native American on the university’s federal diversity filings. Furthermore, she continues to insist that race played no role in her recruitment, even though the former Harvard dean who recruited her says he was aware of her claims to minority status when he hired her.

Prior to being hired by Harvard, Warren had also listed herself as a minority at U Penn.

Amazingly, Warren and her campaign seem to be doubling down on her claims to minority status, claims which the Boston Globe and other publications have thoroughly debunked.

The Globe reports:

“At some point after I was hired by them, I . . . provided that information to the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard,’’ she said in a statement issued by her campaign. “My Native American heritage is part of who I am, I’m proud of it and I have been open about it.’’

Warren’s statement is her first acknowledgment that she identified herself as Native American to the Ivy League schools. While she has said she identified herself as a minority in a legal directory, she has carefully avoided any suggestion during the last month that she took further actions to promote her purported heritage.

When the issue first surfaced last month, Warren said she only learned Harvard was claiming her as a minority when she read it in the Boston Herald.

In other words, she lied. When the Globe showed her evidence that she had lied, she changed her story. But there’s more:

Federal statistics like those in the Harvard records, which were compiled for the Department of Labor, rely on a definition of “Native American’’ that requires both ancestry and an official affiliation with a tribe or community. The 1992-93 and 1995-96 Harvard reports indicate the university relied on that definition during those years as well as the years since. Warren has not met any of those standards. Though she continues to consider herself Native American, she has not provided any genealogical evidence.

In fact, to date, Warren has provided no genealogical evidence whatsoever to substantiate her claims. Nevertheless, Harvard was aware of her claims to minority status when it hired her for a tenured position in 1995.

On Wednesday, Breitbart.com reported that Robert Clark, former dean of the law school, said that to the best of his recollection, he was unaware of her purported ancestry when she was offered the job in February 1993, but learned of it before she joined the faculty in 1995.

The Blog Legal Insurrection reported details about how even Warren’s claim to be 1/32nd Cherokee (claims which the Boston Globe initially reported as valid, before having to issue a retraction) have been debunked. Supposedly, an old marriage license showed that a great-great-great grandmother had listed herself as Cherokee. The existence of this document was widely touted in the media before the Globe ultimately made it’s correction, admitting that even Warren’s desperate, panicked claim to being 1/32nd Cherokee had no evidence to support it. She is, in other words, as white as they come.

As you know, that Boston Globe story created a legend which lives on in the media despite having been thoroughly and repeatedly debunked at every level, and one from which even NEHGS has walked away.

The Globe finally gets around to correcting the story, but buries it in the “For the Record” correction section today:

Correction: Because of a reporting error, a story in the May 1 Metro section and the accompanying headline incorrectly described the 1894 document that was purported to list Elizabeth Warren’s great-great-great grandmother as a Cherokee. The document, alluded to in a family newsletter found by the New England Historic Genealogical Society, was an application for a marriage license,  not the license itself. Neither the society nor the Globe has seen the primary document, whose existence has not been proven.

(Note:  The correction references an article on May 1 which repeated the story; the correction now is appended at the end of the original online version.)

That’s it?  After all the trouble The Globe caused, necessitating countless hours by lowly bloggers to correct the falsehood.

The Globe and the false report of a 1/32 Cherokee connection may have saved Warren’s campaign, as it came at a time when her campaign was in panic and without any evidence to substantiate her claim to Native American ancestry, which she used when a junior faculty member in a law school association directory to obtain “minority law teacher” status.

The false report bought Warren time during which various supportive pundits could opine about what it means to be Cherokee and how dare white people impose their own standards.

Blond haired, blue-eyed Elizabeth Warren, who listed herself as “white” when she taught at the university of Texas in the eighties, suddenly launched herself into a lucrative and prestigious career in the Ivy League after she began claiming minority status. Her $300,000 a year Harvard salary, her former position in the Obama administration, her victory in the Massachusetts Democratic senate primary race–all of these things were obtained on the basis of a lie Warren told others about herself. For now, in spite of all evidence to the contrary, she refuses to admit the facts about her false claims to minority status.

Isn’t it time for Elizabeth Warren to tell the truth?

UPDATE: This article originally reported that Elizabeth Warren began listing herself as Native American in the early nineties. In fact, she began doing so in the late eighties. A short time later she landed her first job teaching in the Ivy League.

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