Law | Politics | Trust

Sen. Reid cites continuing negotiations for a land-into-trust fix





Negotiations continue in the Senate on a fix to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Carcieri v. Salazar, Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nevada) said on Monday.

At the start of the day, Reid appeared confident of action on the issue. He said he planned to bring up S.676 on Wednesday.

"I intend to move to proceed to the Carcieri decision affecting Native Americans. I will file cloture on the motion to proceed on the motion to invoke cloture on Wednesday," said Reid, the Senate majority leader.

But later in the day, the landscape changed. Reid indicated the bill won't come up for consideration due to ongoing negotiations.

"We thought we were going to be able to move toward the Carcieri matter this evening, but we are still negotiating this matter, so we are going to have to do that at some subsequent time," Reid said.

Reid did not elaborate but the fix, which ensures that all tribes can follow the land-into-trust process regardless of the date of federal recognition, has been controversial. While the Obama administration supports the proposal, some in the Senate, including Democrats, have linked the issue to off-reservation gaming.

S.676 has been on the Senate calendar since May. As Reid indicated, the bill is expected to face what is known as a cloture procedure, meaning at least 60 members will have to agree to consider it before it even comes up for a final vote.

During the 111th and 112th sessions of Congress, the number of cloture votes has risen and Reid is proposing to restrict the practice for the next session. Part of yesterday's debate focused on the potential rule change.

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