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Warren supports N.H. attempt to change the name of Columbus Day

  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks during an organizing event at Manchester Community College in Manchester, N.H., Saturday, Jan.12, 2019. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer) Michael Dwyer

  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks during an organizing event at Manchester Community College in Manchester, N.H., Saturday, Jan. 12, 2019. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer) Michael Dwyer

  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren greets the crowd at Sylvia and Bob Larsen’€™s home on School Street in Concord on Saturday. GEOFF FORESTERMonitor staff

  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren speaks to the crowd at the house party at Bob and Sylvia Larsen’s home on School Street in Concord on Saturday, January 12, 2019.

  • U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren speaks to the guests at Bob and Sylvia Larsen’s house party on School Street in Concord, New Hampshire on Saturday, January 12, 2019.



For the Monitor
Saturday, January 12, 2019

Sen. Elizabeth Warren said she supports a bill making its way through the New Hampshire Legislature that would honor North America’s native residents over Christopher Columbus.

“I’m in favor of honoring,” the senator from Massachusetts and all-but-certain Democratic presidential candidate said about a bill to change Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day. “I think that’s a good thing for us to do.”

Warren was interviewed by the Monitor prior to a campaign event she held at Manchester Community College. She was in New Hampshire – the state that for a century has held the first primary in the race for the White House – for the first time since launching a presidential exploratory committee two weeks ago.

“My view on this is why would we not want to honor indigenous people. These were the people who were here. These were the people who in Massachusetts reached out and helped the first settlers to Massachusetts Bay colony and helped them survive those first harsh and rugged years,” Warren said.

Warren’s visit to the Granite State came just days after the bill to change the name of Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day in the New Hampshire received its first committee hearing in the Legislature.

Supporters of the bill – who spoke at a hearing Wednesday – said taking Christopher Columbus’s name off the holiday would correct the record on the Italian explorer’s deadly exploits, while elevating the history of indigenous people.

The Republican-led state House of Representatives rejected a similar bill last March. Opponents suggested the change would disrespect those of Italian heritage. But Democrats won back control of the House – and the state Senate – in November’s election.

Warren’s own heritage has long been questioned by some Republicans.

Last autumn, just weeks before the midterm elections, Warren released a video and results of a DNA test in an attempt to address questions over her past claims of having Native American heritage. But the move was widely panned by political pundits and commentators.