Democratic Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren acknowledged for the first time late Wednesday night that she told Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania that she was Native American, but she continued to insist that race played no role in her recruitment.
“At some point after I was hired by them, I . . . provided that information to the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard,’’ she said in a statement issued by her campaign. “My Native American heritage is part of who I am, I’m proud of it and I have been open about it.’’
Warren’s statement is her first acknowledgment that she identified herself as Native American to the Ivy League schools.
Here first acknowledgment? That is putting it kindly. Here is the Boston Herald from May 4, reporting what sounds like a specific denial:
Warren — who has been dogged by questions about whether she used her claims of Cherokee lineage to further her career — has insisted she never authorized Harvard Law to count her as a Native American in the mid-1990s, when the school was under fire for not having enough minority professors.
So why the change of position?
Warren’s new statement came after the Globe asked her campaign about documents it obtained Wednesday from Harvard’s library showing that the university’s law school began reporting a Native American female professor in federal statistics for the 1992-93 school year, the first year Warren worked at Harvard, as a visiting professor.
The Harvard records do not list a Native American during the years Warren returned to her post at the University of Pennsylvania, but begin to list one in 1995-96, when she returned to Cambridge as a tenured professor.
Well, vigorous sleuthing has cracked the Case of the Missing Inspirational Minority.
And do let's note - the press is losing patience with their Golden Girl. Here is a Boston Herald columnist noting that he has been the only guy supporting her so in return he gets a short, unhelpful phone call about something else.
And the NY Times plays the oldest trick in the aggrieved reporter's book - print the transcript! Here they describe Ms. Warren's joint appearance with Massachusetts Governor Deval:
While recent polling shows Ms. Warren running dead even with Mr. Brown, questions about her heritage have consumed the campaign.
...[T]he Warren campaign gave the news media about 90 minutes’ notice that Mr. Patrick would appear at her headquarters and that they would hold a news conference.
This raised expectations that Ms. Warren might discuss her ancestry in greater detail than she has. But the event was orchestrated to discourage detailed questioning by including about 150 loyal Warren supporters who booed when reporters asked about it.
A reporter said to Ms. Warren that critics were calling her character into question, prompting the supporters in the room to boo and hiss.
Mr. Patrick told them that “even when we don’t like the question, we’ve got to let it be asked.” Turning back to the news media, he said, “We don’t care about that subject.”
Asked whether the issue spoke to Ms. Warren’s character, Mr. Patrick said, “I think I have answered that.”
“Can she answer it?” the reporter said.
Ms. Warren said she would defer to the governor.
“So, you’re not answering, basically?” the reporter asked. Ms. Warren replied, “You just don’t like the answer.”
That's not an answer.