Poll: Bogus ancestry claims not hurting Elizabeth Warren much in Massachusetts

Maybe they bought the spin that she’s a “mythical Indian”?

Nah, just kidding. There’s no mystery about these results. As noted last week, if they can forgive Teddy for leaving a woman to drown, they can forgive Spouting Bull anything.

“In both the February and May polls, Brown has fallen short of the coveted 50 percent mark for an incumbent, while Elizabeth Warren has converted some undecided voters since February,” said David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center in Boston. “This leaves both campaigns no choice but to spend tens of millions of dollars in an all-out war to woo the five percent of voters who will decide this election.”

Seventy-two percent of likely voters were aware of the recent controversy concerning Elizabeth Warren’s heritage. Of those, 49 percent said Warren was telling the truth about being part Native American; 28 percent said she was not telling the truth; and 23 percent weren’t sure. Meanwhile, 41 percent said they believed that Elizabeth Warren benefited by listing herself as a minority, while 45 percent said she did not benefit. Sixty-nine percent of likely voters said that Warren’s Native American heritage listing is not a significant story, while 27 percent said that it is…

Brown’s popularity (58 percent favorable) moved up six points from February (52 percent favorable), while his unfavorable rating remained the same at 28 percent. Warren gained 8 points on her favorable rating (43 percent) since February, when it was 35 percent, but she also tacked 5 points onto her unfavorable rating, which is now 33 percent unfavorable, as opposed to 28 percent in February.

She’s actually gaining in popularity and now trails Brown overall by just a single point. That’s not to say the Cherokee nonsense hasn’t hurt her — 27 percent say that it’s significant — but no doubt the vast majority of those who have a problem with it are already committed Brown supporters/Warren opponents. In fact, for all the fun we’ve had with the story online and all the coverage in the Boston Herald, just 72 percent of respondents have heard about it. By comparison, 80 percent are aware of the story about Romney forcing a haircut on his classmate 50 years ago. (Of those, 46 percent say it makes him a “bully” versus 40 percent who say it doesn’t.)

But here’s the cruelest cut of all:

You can look at that two ways, I guess. One: In Massachusetts, the typical split on Democratic/Republican credibility is probably vastly wider. Two: Really? A woman who evidently lifted recipes for a fake-Indian cookbook and whose strongest claim to Cherokee ancestry is “high cheekbones” is more trustworthy than Scott Brown? Dude?

The silver lining is that this might not yet be over. William Jacobson, who’s been in the lead on this story for weeks, hinted a few days ago that “There are other shoes to drop. I wish I could tell you more, but I can’t. It’s just a matter of when.” Stay tuned.

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