Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) will continue her attempts to repair her relationship with the Native American community Sunday by meeting with tribal leaders in Oklahoma, according to The Washington Post.
Warren's reputation, particularly among Native Americans, has been battered over her repeated exaggerated claims of Native American heritage, culminating with the release of a DNA test showing that she was 1/1024 Native American.
Representatives from 40 federally-recognized tribes in Oklahoma have been invited to a roundtable meeting with Warren in Tulsa on Sunday morning. Later that day, Warren will host a town hall meeting in Oklahoma City. The Post's Annie Linskey reports:
The previously unreported meeting will focus on Warren's agenda for Native Americans and is part of a broader effort to highlight issues important to them. Warren is also trying to blunt the criticism she has faced over the years for appropriating Native American culture by identifying as such, according to three people familiar with the meeting who also spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss it.
At least a dozen tribes have confirmed to be attending the meeting, while others are still trying to decide whether to participate.
"It'll be very heavy," said NickyKay Michael, a member of the tribal council for the Delaware Tribe of Indians. The Delaware Tribe is undecided about its attendance at the meeting. "I don't think they'll be jumping up and down like they'd be for someone who was in their corner for a long time."
Warren began identifying herself as Native American or American Indian in professional and academic settings in the 1980s. She identified as American Indian on her State Bar of Texas registration card in 1986, and identified herself as a minority in the Association of American Law Schools directory that same year.
Warren changed her race from white to Native American in university records while teaching at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and also listed herself as Native American while teaching at Harvard Law School.
Some tribal leaders were upset with Warren for attempting to justify her past claims with a DNA test in response to mockery from President Donald Trump. She has since apologized for the DNA test.