California Democrat Loretta Sanchez is under fire this weekend after a video was posted by the Sacramento Bee showing her remarks at a California Democratic Party's Indian-American Caucus Reception, during which she made what is being described as an "offensive gesture" about Native Americans. From the Bee.
“I am going to his office, thinking that I am going to meet with a,” she said, holding her hand in front of her mouth and making an echo sound. “Right? ... because he said Indian American.
What the Sacramento Bee rather oddly refers to as an "echo sound" is the stereotypical "whoop whoop" sound with one's hand over their mouth, meant to mimic a 'war cry.' The video came to light just two days after the current Democrat Representative officially entered the race for Senate on the Democratic ticket. Her opponent for the nomination, Attorney General Kamala Harris, called the video "shocking" and said that there is "no place for that in our public discourse." Harris' father is African-American, and her mother is Indian. (Not Native American, Ms. Sanchez.)
The man who filmed the video told a local NBC station that several people were offended, including himself. "Oh, I was shocked and appalled that she would make the disparaging comments about Native Americans that way, just very un-Democratic," he said. He was specifying that it was "un-Democratic" because Sanchez is, in fact, a Democrat.
Eventually, the 10-term Democratic Congresswoman stated that "Native Americans have an incredibly great history and a great presence in our country, and many of them are supporting our election." But not until after she first tried to dodge the questions altogether:
The Democrat Congresswoman, who is running as a Democrat for Senate, is a Democrat.