President Donald Trump on Monday weighed in on the Washington Redskins football team and Cleveland Indians baseball team considering changing their names — names Native Americans have long complained are racially offensive.
While he didn’t flat-out say he’s opposed to a change in their names, he tweeted that the franchises are trying to be “politically correct” and his views seemed clear. He took a swipe as well at Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who he repeatedly calls “Pocahontas,” claiming she misrepresented her Native American ancestry.
“They name teams out of STRENGTH, not weakness, but now the Washington Redskins & Cleveland Indians, two fabled sports franchises, look like they are going to be changing their names in order to be politically correct. Indians, like Elizabeth Warren, must be very angry right now!” he tweeted.
The Washington Redskins announced on Friday that the team would undergo a “thorough review” of the teams’s name, saying the decision was made “in light of recent events around our country and feedback from our community.”
“This process allows the team to take into account not only the proud tradition and history of the franchise but also input from our alumni, the organization, sponsors, the National Football League and the local community it is proud to represent on and off the field,” owner Dan Snyder said in a statement.
Snyder, who bought the team in 1999, has previously said the team would “never” change the name, arguing it actually honored Native Americans.
In the last few days, though, the team has come under heavy public pressure from corporate sponsors to change its name, including from FedEx, which owns the naming rights to the stadium where the Washington team plays in Landover, Maryland.
With all the attention on the Washington Redskins, the Cleveland Indians said Friday night they will review their long-debated nickname which has been in place for 105 years, according to the AP.
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The team removed their former mascot “Chief Wahoo” two years ago amid criticism that the logo used was racist.
“We are committed to making a positive impact in our community and embrace our responsibility to advance social justice and equality, ” the MLB franchise said in a statement. “Our organization fully recognizes our team name is among the most visible ways in which we connect with the community.”
ABC News’ Ben Gittleson and Lauren Lantry contributed to this report.
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