Current Affairs Politics

Bad Blood In The Massachusetts Senate Race?

There is a minor firestorm in US politics at the moment (and no, I don’t mean the jaw-droppingly medieval law passed by Christian fundamentalist voters in the state of North Carolina). This particular controversy is swirling around the contest for a US Senate seat in Massachusetts between incumbent Republican Scott Brown and Democratic candidate Elizabeth Warren. The Brown campaign has jumped on media reports that Harvard University advertised Warren as a minority professor in the 1990s due to her alleged Native American heritage. It now turns out that the indigenous American heritage part of the story is actually true and she’s 1/32nd Cherokee (which hardly makes her Wilma Mankiller). However the storm-in-a-teacup shows no signs of abating with all sorts of accusations flying, which, given the bigger picture in Massachusetts and US politics at the moment is more than a little puzzling.

Is it that Elizabeth Warren may have used her very distant and hitherto unpublicised Native American heritage to further her academic career? Or is that she has a Native American heritage in the first place? Read the articles in the regional and national US press and you would think the former. Dig down a little into the right-wing websites and blogs and you would think the latter.

In either case it certainly has the trolls of American cyberdom in fine and fettle form.

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