WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump lashed out at Sen. Elizabeth Warren on Tuesday over DNA test results she released that indicate she has some Native American heritage, saying she is "getting slammed" over what he claimed is "a scam and a lie" despite Warren's proof.
Trump called on his potential 2020 Democratic challenger to apologize and claimed that even the Cherokee Nation "denies her."
Warren released the test results Monday in part to push back against Trump's taunts about her claim of Native American ancestry. The results provide some evidence that a Native American is in her bloodline, though the ancestor probably lived six to 10 generations ago, according to the analysis.
An ancestor six generations removed would make Warren 1/64th Native American while an ancestor as much as 10 generations removed would render the Massachusetts Democrat only 1/1024th Native American, according to Blaine Bettinger, a genealogist and author who specializes in DNA evidence.
Trump, who belittles Warren by calling her "Pocahontas," seized on the conclusion in a series of tweets early Tuesday.
"Pocahontas (the bad version), sometimes referred to as Elizabeth Warren, is getting slammed," he wrote. "She took a bogus DNA test and it showed that she may be 1/1024, far less than the average American. Now Cherokee Nation denies her, "DNA test is useless." Even they don't want her. Phony!"
Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. said Monday that DNA tests are useless in determining tribal citizenship, which is determined by tribal nations. Hoskin accused Warren of "undermining tribal interests with her continued claims of tribal heritage."
Warren acknowledged in a tweet Monday that DNA and family history have nothing to do with tribal affiliation or citizenship, which is determined by tribal nations. "I respect the distinction, & don't list myself as Native in the Senate," she said.
Others questioned Warren's decision to raise the issue so close to an election in which her party is focused on regaining control of the U.S. House.
"Now that her claims of being of Indian heritage have turned out to be a scam and a lie, Elizabeth Warren should apologize for perpetrating this fraud against the American Public," Trump said in another tweet that ignored the evidence of her Native American background, however small the percentage.
Trump thanked the Cherokee Nation "for revealing that Elizabeth Warren, sometimes referred to as Pocahontas, is a complete and total Fraud!"
Hoskin, in his statement, did not refer to Warren as a "fraud."
Trump also claimed Tuesday that Harvard, where Warren has taught law, called her "a person of color" (amazing con), and would not have taken her otherwise!" There is no evidence that Harvard ever publicly described her in that manner.
Charles Fried, the Harvard law professor who recruited Warren, has said any suggestion that she got her job in part because of a claim of minority status is "totally stupid, ignorant, uniformed and simply wrong." Fried said Monday that when he presented her case to the faculty "I did not mention her Native American connection because I did not know about it."
Trump had offered over the summer to donate $1 million to Warren's favorite charity if a DNA test proved her Native American bloodline. On Monday, Trump first denied ever making such a promise. He later upped the ante by saying "I'll only do it if I can test her personally."
"That will not be something I enjoy doing either," he added.
Warren tweeted that Trump is a "cowardly elitist" and that she "won't sit quietly for Trump's racism" so she took the test. She also said he makes "creepy physical threats" about women who scare him, including her.
"He's trying to do what he always does to women who scare him: call us names, attack us personally, shrink us down to feel better about himself," Warren said on Twitter. "It may soothe his ego - but it won't work."
She said she released the results "because I've got nothing to hide. What are YOU hiding, @realDonaldTrump?" she wrote. "Release your tax returns - or the Democratic-led House will do it for you soon enough. Tick-tock, Mr President."
Warren was referring to the Nov. 6 election, when Democrats hope to regain control of the House, which would put them in position to examine and possibly publicly release Trump's income tax returns.
Trump has bucked decades of precedent by refusing to release the returns.