Herschel Walker at a recent campaign event in Georgia. (Photo: Illustration: Chris McGonigal/HuffPost; Photo: Getty Images)
At a small campaign event at the end of last month, Georgia Republican Senate candidate Herschel Walker made a big announcement that his grandmother was a “pure-blood Cherokee,” which meant he was Native American.
Speaking at the Sept. 28 event in Forsyth, Georgia, Walker said: “So I’m Native American!”
“I’m super hybrid,” he continued. “I don’t know who I am, but this was very funny. “A lot of Native Americans were treated worse than blacks in my day,” she said.
Here’s a video clip of his remarks:
For months, Walker claimed to have significant Native American ancestry, each time saying he just learned the news from his mother.
At a January campaign event at the University of Georgia, he revealed that his mother “40% Native American”
He repeated the claim at four campaign events in May as if he had discovered it. At one point he realized that his mother “Most Native Americans” It means he is “also part of the Native Americans.” Elsewhere he said again. “My mother is part Native American and a big part of it.” And it means “I am also ‘the other’.”Elsewhere he said “I’m proud to be black…but I may not be black.” Because he just found out, “My mom is part Native American.”And yet another time he said he just found out about himself “Mom is Native American.”
At a June 20 campaign event in College Park, Georgia, Walker said he learned: “I am part Native American” By doing a 23 year old and my ancestry test. “I want to thank my whole family,” he said, referring to Native Americans.
His September claim went even further.he said his mother just told him about him My grandmother was a purebred Cherokee.
Walker offers no evidence to support his claims about having native ancestry, other than to say it was what his mother told him.
The Huffington Post has reached out to all three federally recognized Cherokee tribes in the United States (the Cherokee Nation, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, and the United Keatowa Band of Cherokee Indians) and is able to verify Walker’s ancestry claims. I checked to see if there was a record. tribe.
Two people did not respond. But a spokesperson for the Cherokee Nation, the nation’s largest tribal government with more than 360,000 citizens, said there was no record of Walker in its citizen database.
“There is no one registered with that name and date of birth in the Cherokee registry database,” said a spokesperson for the tribe.
Walker’s campaign, on the other hand, did not respond to requests for comment on his claim to be part of the Cherokee or for proof that his grandmother was a pure-blood Cherokee. The campaign did not respond.
So the Huffington Post went straight to the source of Walker’s allegations.
Instead, Kristin Walker said she grew up hearing stories that her father’s mother, Hershel Walker’s great-grandmother, was “kind” with the tribe.
“She was close to Cherokee,” she said in a short phone interview Wednesday. When asked to do so, she said she believed her grandmother was somehow related to the Cherokee, but she did not know how.
“I don’t know how far back,” she said, of her apparent Cherokee ancestry.You see, my grandmother died when I was very young. I don’t know much about how she was connected. “
Walker’s campaign did not respond to follow-up requests for comment on his mother’s account of the family’s Cherokee ancestry, which contradicts Walker’s claim that his grandmother was a pure-blood Cherokee.
Many Americans think they have Cherokee ancestry Point your family tree directly to the Cherokee. One of the reasons people so easily perpetuate this myth is because: Slate put it in 2015“Changing your identity to claim past ownership of the imagined Cherokee Nation proves your Americanness and contributes to the crimes Americans have committed against their tribes throughout history.” It is a way to exonerate the collusion of
This feels like the story Walker is trying to create with his claim to be part of the Cherokee.
‘Forget about this color and let’s go back to what’s right: America’ Republican Senate Candidate said at one of his May campaign eventsshortly after his mother said he was part Native American.
In 2018, then Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. denounced Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts). Publish DNA test results To connect with Native Americans. Republicans have criticized and ridiculed Warren for years. donald trump repeatedly and aggressively calling her “Pocahontas”. (Warren apologize later For trying to associate himself with Native Americans.)
A spokesperson for the Cherokee Nation did not respond to a request for comment on Walker’s allegations at the time of the announcement from Hoskin, now chief of the tribe.
Each tribe has its own requirements for proving ancestry. The Cherokee Nation is need documents Registered people listed on the Dows Roll, the final list of people recognized as eligible to belong to the so-called five civilized tribes: Cherokee, Creek, Choctaw, Chickasaw, and Seminole. It directly connects an individual to their direct ancestors.
This article originally appeared on huff post and updated.