President Donald Trump appeared to joke on Saturday about the Trail of Tears genocide — which forcibly displaced and led to the death of thousands of Native Americans — in a tweet mocking Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts.
“Today Elizabeth Warren, sometimes referred to by me as Pocahontas, joined the race for President,” he tweeted. “Will she run as our first Native American presidential candidate, or has she decided that after 32 years, this is not playing so well anymore? See you on the campaign TRAIL, Liz!”
The tweet came shortly after Warren formally declared that she’s running for president in 2020.
Trump has often seized on Warren’s claims of Native American ancestry, and frequently refers to her as “Pocahontas.” In recent weeks, he also mocked her by referring to the Wounded Knee Massacre, which killed hundreds of Lakota tribe members in 1890.
“If Elizabeth Warren, often referred to by me as Pocahontas, did this commercial from Bighorn or Wounded Knee instead of her kitchen, with her husband dressed in full Indian garb, it would have been a smash!” he tweeted on January 13.
Warren has battled ongoing controversy about her identity, including a recent episode where she released a DNA test revealing she had a distant Native American ancestor. The Washington Post also recently uncovered a 1986 bar registration card showing that she identified herself as “American Indian” on the line designating her race.
Warren has apologized for claiming Native American ancestry, and sought to clarify that she is not a tribal citizen.