American Indian Voting!!!!!

Political candidates key to sovereignty, gov tells tribal leaders
Sara Thorson
Associated Press
Jun. 16, 2003 04:00 PM

Leaders of the National Congress of American Indians said Monday they have a drive in place to help convince more Indians to vote and run for state and federal office in 2004.
Congress President Tex Hall said tribes need to make changes to increase Indian participation in state and federal elections to match the high participation in tribal elections.
"In Alaska, we changed our tribal elections to the same as national elections," he said at a news conference Monday. Most tribal elections have a better than 95 percent turnout, Hall added.
The congress' executive director, Jacqueline Johnson, said the vote and registration drive, called Native Vote 2004, will distribute information to tribes in all states to educate them about state election resources and the appointment process. Tribal leaders also said at the news conference that tribal representatives who attended a related summit on Saturday agreed to work to preserve sovereignty and improve government-to-government relations.
"A stealth attack is under way on the principles and policies of our tribal sovereignty that we rely on," Hall said. The tribal leaders' comments followed a call earlier in the day by Gov. Janet Napolitano to increase Indian presence in all levels of government. She encouraged tribal leaders to mobilize voters, and to speak out in support of the recently renamed Piestewa Peak and Piestewa Freeway. They were renamed at the governor's urging in honor of Army Spc. Lori Piestewa, a Hopi woman from Tuba City believed to be the first American Indian woman killed in combat while fighting for U.S. forces.
Napolitano told tribal leaders that opposition groups are petitioning to have the peak and freeway returned to the original names, Squaw Peak and Squaw Peak Parkway. She urged leaders to speak out in support of the name change. "(Squaw) is an offensive part of our history, best left in the past," she said.
Immediately after Napolitano spoke, the Indian congress unanimously agreed to draft a resolution in support of the name change. "All tribes are very impressed by the efforts of Janet Napolitano," Hall said. "To go back would be a complete reversal of positive state government and tribe relations. I hope to God that never occurs."
Copyright c. 2003 The Arizona Republic.

Get out there and vote! We need a solid representation in political offices!




Contact Webmaster

Home   Fair Use Policy    Disclaimer    Privacy Statement