(PresidentialHill.com)- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that House Democrats would investigate how to seat a non-voting U.S. senator. Nearly two centuries ago, a House delegate promised this to the Cherokee Nation.
A left-leaning report states that Republicans will seize power in the House after four years out of control and could hinder Cherokee Nation’s efforts to seat a promised delegate. It is unknown if Pelosi will advocate for the Cherokee Nation delegate in a lame-duck session of Congress or if it will be part of the minority’s agenda.
During the House Rules Committee hearing, Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. explained why one of the country’s largest indigenous tribes desires to seat the delegate. The Cherokee Nation fulfilled its treaty obligation long ago with land and lives. It is now time for the United States to fulfill its treaty obligation.
According to a report, the 1835 Treaty of New Echota, signed by President Andrew Jackson, reportedly guaranteed the Cherokee Nation a nonvoting House delegate. It would be comparable to the current situation in the District of Columbia and U.S. territories. This same treaty compelled the Cherokee Nation to relocate from their ancestral homelands in Georgia, Alabama, and Tennessee to their current location in Oklahoma.
The Cherokee Nation was not permitted to form a modern sovereign government until the 1970s. It took additional years for scholars to realize that a congressional delegate had been promised to them.
Reports show that in 2019, when he was elected principal chief, Hoskin appointed Kim Teehee, a Cherokee Nation citizen, as the tribe’s first House delegate. Her appointment coincides with increased political demands from tribal nations. Since then, the Cherokee Nation has garnered support from both Oklahoma parties and other indigenous tribes who believe treaties must be honored. Teehee could not vote on final legislation as a delegate, but she could vote in committee and deliver floor speeches.
There are questions regarding what can be done administratively versus what requires a resolution or new legislation, as well as how to minimize legal challenges.
If Democrats fail to act on the delegate, Indigenous activists will accuse them of taking them for granted and not prioritizing their concerns.
It’s just lip service. If they cared about the tribes, they would have already done something about the human trafficking and drug cartels operating on the reservations.