Ray Halbritter, the most vocal leader of the effort to change the name of the Washington Redskins, is not even a member of the Oneida tribe he claims to represent, according to New York Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney.
The Oneida Indian Nation of New York determines membership with a requirement of 1/4 blood heritage. However, the woman to whom Halbritter traces his ancestry back was not even a member of the tribe.
“He has no ancestry in the Six Nations, but he has a lot of powerful friends in D.C.,” Tenney said.
In early 2012, Halbritter attended a high dollar fundraiser with President Obama and 70 Indian leaders that raised $2.5 million for the president’s re-election campaign.
President Obama recently added fuel to the name controversy by saying that, if he were owner of the Redskins, he would consider changing the name. By weighing in, figures such as NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell are taking this issue far more seriously.