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Steve Russell: Sovereignty faces serious threat under Donald Trump

Filed Under: Opinion | Politics
More on: aca, donald trump, ihcia, sovereignty, steve russell, termination
     
   

Donald Trump. Photo: Gage Skidmore

Repealing the Affordable Care Act and the Indian Health Care Improvement Act aren't the only threats facing Indian Country. Steve Russell, a citizen of the Cherokee Nation, thinks Republican president-elect Donald Trump could go even further and dismantle federal Indian law:
President Trump had the blueprint down for ending tribal sovereignty long before he went into politics. My hope was that we would be so far down his priority list that he would not get around to us.

A column by my colleague Lynn Armitage tells me that was a vain hope. She quotes Deswood Tome as asserting that our statutory citizenship is different than constitutional citizenship to our detriment.

That was once true in one sense. It could be taken away. It was conferred without our request and it theoretically could be taken back in a similar manner, but I don’t think that’s possible now.

One reason is that I do not think the courts will any longer construe the Fourteenth Amendment to deny American Indians birthright citizenship. Leaving aside the administrative nightmare, citizenship cannot be taken away from persons currently citizens absent fraud in the application (we made no application) and that makes our children birthright citizens.

Tome goes on to claim that the Indian Citizenship Act makes us second-class citizens. Say what?

Read More on the Story:
Steve Russell: Trump Will Repeal and Replace It! (Indian Country Today 1/3)

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