Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Four Days Until the New Election: Beat to the Punch

So today was the day a federal court judge was going to tell us how or if we could run our own election, but it turns out the Freedmen and the BIA, working with APCSJC beat him to it.

According to media reports, our election is not only going to be this Saturday, but also the next few Saturdays. 

Crittenden cut a deal with the BIA and Freedmen that gave them their citizenship back, and allowed them to vote-- even extending the timeframe for voting until October 8, though the regular election is still on for Saturday.  Which Crittenden basically told us he’d do a few days ago if we were listening, when he said:  "They may have helped put me in office. I believe they're entitled to vote again.

We’re not sure how this works, because the Cherokee Nation Supreme Court ruled that freedmen weren’t citizens, so how can APCSJC agree in federal court to grant them citizenship anyway?

We’re not sure, but he did.  His statement on the Cherokee Nation web site says “I am especially concerned about the funding that has been withheld.  I hope the action today will allow those $33 million in HUD funds to be released to us.  It’s a significant sum and the people at the Cherokee Nation who work in housing programs will not have to worry about the funding or services to our people.”  So, I guess if the Cherokee Nation does something the BIA doesn’t like, all they have to do is tell us they won’t give us any money and we’ll do whatever they say. 

So now the BIA and the freedmen get to tell us who votes in this upcoming election, not our Supreme Court and not our own Constitution.  How do the candidates feel about that?  Well, they are both pretty sure it is the other guy’s fault.

Baker blamed “Smith and his Supreme Court” for trying to steal the election and then demanding a new election, spending a fortune on lawyers and then losing the case.

All of which is a little weird,  considering that if the court was going to steal the election, they could’ve just made Smith Chief a few weeks ago and saved us a lot of trouble.  And that it was Baker who argued for a new election after the Supreme Court told him he had less votes than Smith, the court gave him what he wanted!  And that the Cherokee Nation didn’t lose the case, APCSJC just handed over the decision about who votes in our election without much of a fight.

Smith blamed Baker by saying "The agreement in the federal court is in direct violation of the decision of the highest Cherokee Nation court that Freedmen are not citizens of the Cherokee Nation.”  He said that Crittenden was doing Bakers dirty work, getting Freedmen special treatment and accusing them both of “sell(ing) out the Cherokee Nation to the BIA and non-Indian freedmen descendants for a few votes.”

To put this all in perspective, the people in Taiwan this morning are reading about us in their paper.  Here’s the message they are hearing: “Osiyo, y’all.  Cherokee Nation is a sovereign nation.  We’re just waiting for another nation to tell us how to run our elections and government.”

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