The Pueblo of Santa Ana owns and operates the Santa Ana Star Casino on its homelands in New Mexico. Donald Trump will not be coming there during his visit to the state and the tribe has nothing to do with his rally at the Santa Ana Star Center in neighboring Rio Rancho. Photo by Indianz.Com (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0)

Pueblo of Santa Ana issues statement to 'disavow' connection to Donald Trump rally

The Pueblo of Santa Ana wants everyone to know that the tribe has nothing to do with Donald Trump's visit to New Mexico.

Trump, who is running for re-election in 2020, is holding a campaign rally at the Santa Ana Star Center on Monday evening. The name of the facility comes from the Santa Ana Star Casino, the tribe's gaming establishment.

But the tribe does not determine who gets to use the Santa Ana Star Center. It's operated by the city of Rio Rancho -- the name is only the result of a naming rights agreement between a tribal entity and the city.

Posted by Santa Ana Star Center on Tuesday, March 3, 2015

That hasn't stopped people from calling up the tribe to complain about the presidential campaign visit, according to news reports. Most of the reaction has been negative.

“I talked to one man who told me he was in disbelief that we could host the president,” Santa Ana Governor Timothy Menchego told The Albuquerque Journal. “The man said, ‘He’s (Trump) not a good supporter of Native Americans.’"

The attention prompted the tribe to issue a press release last week explaining that its businesses "have no role or responsibility with respect to any upcoming events at Star Center and disavow any connection or involvement with such events."

Rio Rancho is the third-largest city in New Mexico and one of the fastest-growing in the state. Part of that success is due to the tribe, whose casino and other businesses, entities and operations are right next door.

Rio Rancho is right outside of Albuquerque, the largest city in the state, which went for Democrat Hillary Clinton over Trump in the 2016 presidential election. The state also went for Democrat Barack Obama over his Republican challengers in 2012 and 2008.

The state's entire U.S. Congressional delegation, including the district representing Santa Ana, is Democratic. All of the top executive offices in the state are held by Democrats.

Read More on the Story
Pueblo of Santa Ana distances itself from presidential visit (KRQE September 11, 2019)
Officials: Pueblo has no connections with Trump visit (The Albuquerque Journal September 12, 2019)

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