Cherokee Nation To Elizabeth Warren: You’re Not One of Us

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U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren says a DNA test shows she’s part-American Indian as she has claimed for years. Cherokee Nation isn’t buying it.

“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 in a written statement on Monday.

Warren released the results of a DNA test where a genetics expert found she may have between 1/64 and 1/1,012 American Indian DNA.

Warren for years has cited family lore to claim she is part Cherokee and part Delaware Indian.

“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,” Hoskin said. “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.”

Warren says the DNA test results validate her longstanding claims.