Trevor Noah hits Warren: Native American claims are 'something problematic'

Late-night host Trevor Noah said Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenSenate GOP blocks defense bill, throwing it into limbo Restless progressives eye 2024 Poll: Harris, Michelle Obama lead for 2024 if Biden doesn't run MORE (D-Mass.) "did something problematic" with claims about her Native American heritage.

During his late-night show, Noah said President TrumpDonald TrumpPence: Supreme Court has chance to right 'historic wrong' with abortion ruling Prosecutor says during trial that actor Jussie Smollett staged 'fake hate crime' Overnight Defense & National Security — US, Iran return to negotiating table MORE's "Pocahontas" nickname for Warren is a "tricky one to process." Nicknames Trump uses on other people are "self-explanatory," he said.

"But when he says 'Pocahontas,' you might be thinking, 'Wait Trevor, I'm confused, is Elizabeth Warren Native America?' " Noah said.

"And you see, that's the question because, for a long time, she said she was."

ADVERTISEMENT

Noah said in 2012, the New England Historic Genealogical Society "looked into" and found "no proof of Warren having Native American lineage."

Noah said that was "problematic." 

He said he is struggling with the question of whether Trump is racist.

"Is Donald Trump racist? Yeah. But in his own way, he is hitting Elizabeth Warren for saying she is Native American when she wasn't," Noah, a frequent critic of Trump, said.

Noah said it's not that Warren "committed a crime."

“Elizabeth Warren did something problematic, the kind of thing we rightfully call each other out for every single day,” Noah continued.

“So as weird as it is to say, in his own racially offensive way, Donald Trump was being woke. Yeah, and that’s, unfortunately, the truth.”

Trump on Monday called Warren "Pocahontas" during an event honoring Navajo Code Talkers.

During the event honoring three Navajos who helped the U.S. Marine Corps develop a secret code during World War II, Trump said: "You were here long before any of us were here."

Trump has repeatedly used the derisive nickname when talking about Warren, a reference to her claims of Native American heritage.