Cherokee Nation responds to Sen. Warren’s DNA test

Sen. Elizabeth Warren is obviously running for president and as such, she was hoping to put to rest one big knock against her to rest: her claim that she is of American Indian heritage.

So, Warren completed a DNA test, but it didn’t go as she probably had hoped.

According to the Daily Beast, “The analysis of Warren’s DNA was reportedly done by Carlos D. Bustamante, a Stanford University professor, and shows that she had a Native American in her family tree dating back six to 10 generations.”

That’s such a low percentage that most tribes wouldn’t even accept that as proof of heritage. According to the Department of the Interior, each tribe has different requirements and most don’t accept someone with less than 25% of Native American heritage, which is one great-grandparent. If you don’t know who in your family had Native American heritage, it’s unlikely you would meet the requirements to join a tribe.

Well, now after Warren’s political stunt, the Cherokee Nation has responded and they aren’t real pleased.

“A DNA test is useless to determine tribal citizenship. Current DNA tests do not even distinguish whether a person’s ancestors were indigenous to North or South America,” Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. said. “Sovereign tribal nations set their own legal requirements for citizenship, and while DNA tests can be used to determine lineage, such as paternity to an individual, it is not evidence for tribal affiliation. Using a DNA test to lay claim to any connection to the Cherokee Nation or any tribal nation, even vaguely, is inappropriate and wrong. It makes a mockery out of DNA tests and its legitimate uses while also dishonoring legitimate tribal governments and their citizens, whose ancestors are well documented and whose heritage is proven. Senator Warren is undermining tribal interests with her continued claims of tribal heritage.”

 

 

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