Sen. Jeanne Shaheen has family ties to Pocahontas, and no, she won't tell Sen. Warren
U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., has something to say about her family ties to Native American history, but she is not going to share it with fellow Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., according to her statements in an online CNN video.
In their Badass Women of Washington feature, CNN Politics has a video profile of Shaheen by correspondent Dana Bash.
The interview touches on Shaheen's move to Washington following her work on the campaigns of other politicians and her terms serving New Hampshire directly as governor.
Shaheen said she ran four campaigns for other politicians, such as President Jimmy Carter in 1976 and Democratic candidate Gary Hart in 1984, and learned that "you can't always control the outcome of an election," about her 2002 loss running for senate.
But her influence as a female leader goes even further back in history. Way back.
"Fun fact, she can trace her lineage back to a notable woman in history," says Bash in the video.
Bash asks Shaheen if she can confirm that she is a direct descendant of Pocahontas.
"I can," said Shaheen. "I actually have the family tree to show that."
Pocahontas was a Native American woman who lived in what became the Virginia area in the 17th century. She is the daughter of Wahunsenaca or "Chief Powhatan" and her nickname Pocahontas meant "playful one," according to historical researchers.
Pocahontas is associated with saving the life of English colonial leader John Smith, though the truth of the commonly known tale is suspected as false by some. She eventually married Englishman John Rolfe. The circumstances and reasons for the marriage, however, are also under question.
But the reason the Pocahontas reference is timely belongs to the fact that Warren made claims she herself was of Native American descent. The claim was mocked by President Donald Trump when he was a candidate. He referred to Warren as "Pocahontas."
When Bash asked Shaheen if she would bring up her own direct ties to Warren, Shaheen said it was "kind of a sensitive topic, so probably not."