Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Election Limbo Part II, Day 3: Pleased to Meet You, Mr. S. John Crittenbaker

Three days after election day 2, our election rules are changing thanks to Jon Velie, APCSJC, Baker, Smith, the BIA, Judge Kennedy in Washington DC and our own beloved Cherokee Nation Election Commission. But the two biggest players seem to be the guys sharing a brain that wants to do whatever the BIA and the freedmen tell them to.  

And henceforth we shall call it... S. John Crittenbaker!

Picture Credit & Caption: www.joecrittenden.com
This morning, S. John Crittenbaker worked out a deal with the freedmen and the BIA saying not only should freedmen be given more days to vote because APCSJC didn’t comply with last week’s court order, but also that Cherokees would now get to walk in and vote.  Hooray for Cherokees, right?  Not so fast. 

1) APCSJC's deal didn’t extend the mail-in voting for Cherokees, so if you forgot to mail your absentee ballot, or mailed it late, too dang bad for you. 

2) Freedmen who haven’t voted by mail already, but did request an absentee ballot, will all be sent a SECOND ballot via overnight mail. 

3) If Cherokees by blood still want to vote, they better know somebody who knows somebody (or just read Cherokee Truth, but we’re sure all our readers already voted, right?), because APCSJC’s custom-made court order does NOT require any notification about extra voting days be sent to Cherokees by blood. But EVERY Freedman must be notified. And lucky for them, that’s already happened.

So while that was sinking in, the election commission met today and Smith told them he didn’t think it was fair that only Freedmen got two extra weeks to turn in their absentee ballots and that only local Cherokees who could drive to Tahlequah (and Freedmen) got to vote, not people who live far away or voted by mail. And the Election Commission agreed with Smith and changed things some more, allowing all Cherokees to turn their absentee ballots in by October 8th.

Smith and Baker both put up comments online, as did the election commission and APCSJC.

Smith pointed out that he was the guy who fought for Cherokee absentee ballots to be counted and equal notification of the extra voting days, while Baker (again) accused Smith of stealing the election the first time saying the AG and the Supreme Court were just doing Chad’s bidding. Keep in mind, the Cherokee Nation Supreme Court hasn’t done anything in a month or so, and declined to make Smith Chief even after they found he had the most votes.

So the votes haven’t been counted yet and it looks like Baker is already lining up his excuses.

On that same page, APCSJC's statement seems to be just a repetition of what the order says. Towards the bottom, he does say: "As of today, the required notice to the Cherokee Freedmen has been mailed. There were never any negotiations that non-citizen Cherokee Freedmen, Cherokee Freedmen unregistered to vote, non-citizen Cherokees or Cherokees unregistered to vote were going to be allowed to vote during the Friday hearing. The Nation will continue to work through this important matter."

So, now we know what "never" happened in the negotiations. But we wonder if we'll ever know what actually DID happen when S. John Crittenbaker was making another deal with the freedmen and the BIA to change our election laws.

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