Day two of following up with the Cherokee Phoenix Truth report, where they shine a hazy flashlight of truth into the muck and mire of Cherokee Nation’s campaign season. We prefer using some big ol’ floodlights instead, trying to add context if there is any, because TRUTH doesn’t exist in a vacuum.
Yesterday we looked at Baker truths/Smith lies as verified by the Phoenix. Today we look as Smith truths and/or Baker lies as verified by the Phoenix. (scroll down to page 10)
Turns out, Smith is telling the truth when he says Hastings' services have improved and the Nation has invested $9 million to bring facilities up to snuff since the takeover. They also spend a long, tortured paragraph saying that Smith is telling the truth when he said Baker ‘voted to impeach the justices of the tribe’s highest court.’ Some people remember that and call it the Constitutional Crisis.
And yes, Baker did actually call the members of the Cherokee Nation’s highest court ‘idiots and boys’ but he did later say ‘I never should have got that carried away.’ He did, in fact, make a motion to impeach those ‘idiots’ in an illegal meeting without a quorum, and then voted YES to impeach them.
Yes, Baker was actually chair of the tribe's executive and finance committee with responsibility to oversee the budget when the auditors were unable to express an opinion. The Phoenix does point out that in some years, other audits conformed with ‘generally accepted accounting principles.’
The Phoenix also confirms that Baker has twice flown on what we now affectionately call "CHAirforce One," and provides context that it was with other council members. They confirm Baker receives a travel allowance of $6,000 but discontinued submitting mileage when ‘he got a campaign truck,’ and that the truck is just one of five different vehicles he has used for Cherokee Nation business. The Phoenix neglected to provide the context that all council members get that stipend regardless of their mileage.
Tomorrow: The Cherokee Phoenix uncovers the biggest lie of the campaign so far.