Trump refers to a 'Pocahontas' in
Congress at meeting with veterans
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[November 28, 2017]
By Jeff Mason
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald
Trump said there was a "Pocahontas" in the U.S. Congress during a
meeting on Monday with Native American World War Two veterans in an
apparent derogatory reference to Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren of
After listening to one veteran speak at length about his experience as a
"Navajo code talker" during the war, Trump heaped praise on the veterans
and said he would not give prepared remarks himself.
"You were here long before any of us were here," Trump said. "Although
we have a representative in Congress who they say was here a long time
ago. They call her Pocahontas."
Trump repeatedly referred to Warren as "Pocahontas," the name of a
famous 17th-century Native American, during his presidential campaign in
a mocking reference to Warren's having said in the past that she had
Native American ancestry.
Warren, one of the Senate's most prominent liberal Democrats, is a noted
legal scholar who taught at Harvard Law School and served as an adviser
to former President Barack Obama before she was elected to the Senate in
"It is deeply unfortunate that the president of the United States cannot
even make it through a ceremony honoring these heroes without having to
throw out a racial slur," Warren said on MSNBC.
White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders disputed the characterization of
Trump's remark as a racial slur.
"I think what most people find offensive is Senator Warren lying about
her heritage to advance her career," Sanders told reporters.
[to top of second column]
President Donald Trump hosts an event honouring the Native American
code talkers, including Thomas Begay (L) and Peter McDonald, in
front of a painting of President Andrew Jackson, at the White House
in Washington, U.S., November 27, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Jefferson Keel, president of the National Congress of American
Indians, questioned the "use of the name Pocahontas as a slur ...
Once again, we call upon the president to refrain from using her
name in a way that denigrates her legacy.”
Trump's comment immediately trended on social media. The word
"Pocahontas" appeared 12 times on Twitter every second, according to
social media analytics company Zoomph.
Trump's knock at Warren came as his administration is embroiled in
controversy over the Consumer Financial Protection Board, which
Warren helped develop before entering politics.
The agency, set up to protect Americans from abusive lending
practices after the financial crisis, has been under attack by Trump
since he took office in January.
On Friday, Trump named his budget director as the interim head of
the agency, after its outgoing chief named someone else to the job,
setting up a court battle.
(Reporting by Jeff Mason; additional reporting by Doina Chiacu and
Angela Moon; Editing by Leslie Adler and Tom Brown)
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