Obama Campaign Manager Vents Frustration Over Warren's DNA Test: 'Why Can't Dems Ever Stay Focused?'

Jim Messina / Getty Images
October 15, 2018

One of the architects of President Barack Obama's 2012 re-election vented frustration with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) after she released her DNA test showing evidence of Native American ancestry, tweeting "Why can't Dems ever stay focused???"

Warren made her strongest indication yet she will challenge President Donald Trump in 2020 with a campaign-style video and tweetstorm declaring the controversy over her claims of Native American ancestry had been put to bed and Trump's "Pocahontas" attacks deflated.

Her evidence: A DNA test analyzed by a Stanford professor showing "strong evidence" of a Native American ancestry between six and 10 generations back. That would make her anywhere between 1/64th and 1/1,024th Native American.

Jim Messina served as Obama's campaign manager in 2012, the last successful election year for Democrats as Obama won a second term and Democrats expanded their Senate majority. Calling the midterms an opportunity for Democrats to "save America" by winning back Congress, he tweeted his agony over why Warren would apparently snatch up a news cycle with such a gesture three weeks before Nov. 6.

"Argue the substance all you want, but why 22 days before a crucial election where we MUST win house and senate to save America, why did @SenWarren have to do her announcement now? Why can’t Dems ever stay focused???" Messina tweeted.

Warren, who is cruising to re-election in Massachusetts, had long played coy about her presidential ambitions, but she said last month she would take a "hard look" at running after the midterms.

Her rejoinders at Trump on Monday about his "Pocahontas" attacks on her—she has long been dogged for claiming she was Native American while teaching law at University of Pennsylvania and Harvard—signaled this maneuver was about the White House.