Democrats on Monday reacted with dismay and disbelief to Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s release just three weeks before the midterm elections, of a DNA test showing she may have traces of Native American ancestry.
Jim Messina, Obama 2012 campaign manager, tweeted, “Argue the substance all you want, but why 22 days before a crucial election where we MUST win house and senate to save America, why did @SenWarren have to do her announcement now? Why can’t Dems ever stay focused???”
David Axelrod, former President Obama’s chief campaign strategist and White House adviser, wrote: “The risk I’m sure she considered? This elevates it.”
CNN contributor and political analyst Ana Navarro, a Republican who voted for Clinton in 2016, wondered why Warren did not wait until after the midterms, in order to keep the message focused.
“Honestly though, shouldn’t Elizabeth Warren have waited 3 weeks to release her DNA results? There are tight races all over the country. Seems to me, best use of time for any potential Democratic presidential nominee candidate right now, is helping elect other Democrats.”
The release of Warren’s test — widely seen as a precursor to a 2020 presidential run — was roundly mocked by conservatives and criticized by some progressives.
The test shows that Warren has between .09 and 1.6 percent Native American ancestry, at the most. According to the New York Times, researchers found that European-Americans had genomes that were on average 98.6 percent European, .19 percent African, and .18 Native American.
As Breitbart’s Joel Pollak summarizes, she may be no more Native American than the average white American.
“This seems like a distraction,” wrote Jeff Blattner, former chief counsel to Sen. Edward Kennedy and former deputy assistant attorney general.
A former Google employee summed it up this way: “I’m hard pressed to find anything worse to talk about 3 weeks from the midterms than Bill Clinton’s affairs or Elizabeth Warren’s heritage.”