Presidential hopeful Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenPoll: Harris, Michelle Obama lead for 2024 if Biden doesn't run Biden eyes new path for Fed despite Powell pick Equilibrium/Sustainability — Presented by Southern Company — Storms a growing danger for East Coast MORE (D-Mass.) faced tough questions from Charlamagne tha God over past claims to Native American ancestry in a radio interview this week, getting compared to Rachel Dolezal, a former NAACP leader who lied about being black.
When asked by Charlamagne why she said on old documents that she had Native American ancestry, Warren responded, "It's what I believed. Like I said, it's what I learned from my family," according to a video clip posted to Twitter on Friday.
"I learned about my family the same way most people learn about their family, from my mama and my daddy and my aunts and my uncles," Warren said.
Charlamagne then asked Warren when she found out she was not actually Native, and the 2020 hopeful did not directly answer.
"I'm not a person of color. I'm not a citizen of a tribe, and tribal citizenship is an important distinction and not something I am," she said.
Warren said she had not received any benefits from the claim, pointing to a Boston Globe report from September that found that her statements did not influence her career.
"You're kind of like the original Rachel Dolezal a little bit," Charlamagne pushed back.
"This is what I learned from my family," the senator replied.
Watch @cthagod grill @ewarren on her heritage. "When did you find out that you weren't [Native American]?" "Were there any benefits to that?" "You sound like the original Rachel Dolezal a little bit" @breakfastclubam pic.twitter.com/GFzH8JqSqN— Sarah Dolan (@sarahedolan) May 31, 2019
Warren in October said that a DNA test that showed "strong evidence" that she has Native American ancestry, prompting strong pushback. She has since apologized to the Cherokee Nation for doing so.
She is among two dozen people vying for the Democratic Party's 2020 presidential nomination. Her campaign has seen a bump in the polls in recent weeks as she has rolled out a series of detailed progressive policy proposals.
President TrumpDonald TrumpStowaway found in landing gear of plane after flight from Guatemala to Miami Kushner looking to Middle East for investors in new firm: report GOP eyes booting Democrats from seats if House flips MORE frequently refers to Warren as "Pocahontas," a nickname inspired by her past claims.