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Statement on cabinet-level position and joint standing committee on Indian Affairs

I have been told that my people, Native people, will one day blossom as a rose on the desert. But I question how that can be possible when we are relentlessly blocked at every turn.

Being kept away from the decision-making processes is a policy more befitting of the 19th century than the 21st. States and the federal government aren't the only actors in federalism. Under the Commerce Clause of the US Constitution, Native nations are Sovereign political entities.

Since our peoples are systematically gerrymandered out of the political process, our political voices are disenfranchised. Ignoring our voices isn't only undemocratic, but a vestige of colonial racism that shouldn't be a part of our society.

This is a question of equality and political rights.

It is a painfully simple thing to do to have a cabinet-level position and create a joint standing committee. It's the right thing to do. And right now is the time to do it. It is something Native voters, we Native people, wan…