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By Ryan Lau | @agorisms
After years of squabbling, President Trump and Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren are finally moving forward on their heritage dispute. In July, the president offered Warren a million dollar donation to the charity of her choice. All she had to do? Take a DNA test that could prove that she was indeed of Native American ancestry.
The Heritage of Elizabeth Warren
On Monday, following countless sparks between the two figures, Warren’s results came in. The test determined a strong probability of one Native American ancestor, from between six and ten generations back. This means that she is between 1/64th and 1/1024th Native American.
Just how much heritage is this, in perspective? Depending on the generation of the last ancestor, she could either be 1/64th, 1/128th, 1/256th, 1/512th, or 1/1024th. Of course, these are real, albeit small, numbers that do prove slight native ancestry.
However, the average European American, according to an ethnicity study with data collected by 23andme, is approximately 1/512th Native American. Thus, Warren has a 40% chance of having an average or below-average amount of Native American blood. Due to this finding, many are wondering whether it is right to consider Elizabeth Warren Native American. Even if the ancestor is in a more recent generation, the distinction over the average caucasian is relatively small. President Trump tweeted about this Tuesday, making note of the 1/1024th statistic.
Pocahontas (the bad version), sometimes referred to as Elizabeth Warren, is getting slammed. 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!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 16, 2018
One of the leading voices against Warren is the suddenly popular Republican Senator, Lindsey Graham. After a failed 2016 Presidential campaign, Graham was out of the spotlight for much of the past 2 years. Recently, though, he regained national attention with sharp remarks during the Kavanaugh hearings. Famously, he called the whole thing an “unethical sham”, noting that now-Justice Kavanaugh had “nothing to be ashamed of”.
On Tuesday, Graham retook the center stage with firm words about Warren’s ancestry and his own. Specifically, he believed that he would be able to have a higher percentage of Native American heritage.
“I think I can beat her”, the senator stated on Fox & Friends. He believes that his grandmother was part Cherokee, though admits that he could be wrong. Graham also said that he considers this his “Trump moment”, making a joke about the president’s reality show history.
A Xenophobic Addition?
Following his challenge, Graham also made a highly incendiary comment regarding his own ancestry. When the hosts asked him about his predictions, he came out swinging against Iran.
“I’ll probably be Iranian”, the Senator mused. “That would be, like, terrible.” After this, he did modify the statement, asserting that the Iranians are “bad leaders”, rather than bad people. He also made clear that he is “not in the Ayatollah Branch.” Despite these clarifications, many users on Twitter condemned the comments as racist and xenophobic.
This statement shows a drawing together of Graham and Trump over the past two years. Though the senator mocked then-candidate Trump’s foreign policy as isolationism during the campaign, their disputes have fizzled. Much of this comes in the wake of Trump’s increased hostility towards Iran. An enemy of the U.S. ally, Saudi Arabia, Iran often receives harsh words from the current administration.
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