A top Cherokee chief has called several of Sen. Scott Brown’s campaign staffers “offensive and downright racist” for making war whoops and tomahawk-chopping motions at a rally for their boss earlier this week.
“The conduct of these individuals goes far beyond what is appropriate and proper in political discourse,” said Bill John Baker, principal chief of the Cherokee Nation. “It is those types of actions that perpetuate negative stereotypes and continue to minimize and degrade all native peoples.”
The staffers were caught on video making fun of claims by Elizabeth Warren — Mr. Brown’s Democratic opponent — that she was part Cherokee. One of the main participants was Brad Garnett, a field director for the Massachusetts GOP, who was seen whooping and making a chopping motion with his arm.
Lacking evidence to back up her claim, Mrs. Warren was dogged by the issue last spring and it resurfaced last week when Mr. Brown used it during a debate to call her character into question.
The issue has typically played well for the Republican senator. But his staffers’ behavior soured things yesterday as he was forced to respond, saying it was something he “doesn’t condone.”
Mr. Baker called for a full-fledged apology.
“A campaign that would allow and condone such offensive and racist behavior must be called to task for their actions,” he said.