By Mary Carmichael | The Boston Globe
US Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren has said she was unaware that Harvard Law School had been promoting her purported Native American heritage until she read about it in a newspaper several weeks ago.
But for at least six straight years during Warrenâ€™s tenure, Harvard University reported in federally mandated diversity statistics that it had a Native American woman in its senior ranks at the law school. According to both Harvard officials and federal guidelines, those statistics are almost always based on the way employees describe themselves.
In addition, both Harvardâ€™s guidelines and federal regulations for the statistics lay out a specific definition of Native American that Warren does not meet.
The documents suggest for the first time that either Warren or a Harvard administrator classified her repeatedly as Native American in papers prepared for the government in a way that apparently did not adhere to federal diversity guidelines. They raise further questions about Warrenâ€™s statements that she was unaware Harvard was promoting her as Native American.
The Warren campaign declined Thursday to answer the Globeâ€™s specific questions about the documents. In a statement, Warrenâ€™s spokeswoman, Alethea Harney, said that â€œover the past month Elizabeth has answered countless questions openly while the people who recruited her have made it clear it was because of her extraordinary skill as a teacher and a groundbreaking scholar.â€™â€™
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