Opinion | Politics

Mark Trahant: Republicans and old debts to Native Americans

"Are House Republicans about to begin a Native American voter initiative?

The New York Times reports that Oregon’s Greg Walden, chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, talked about the party’s outreach efforts.

Walden said it’s an imporant priority -- and that Representatives Tom Cole and Markwayne Mullin, both of Oklahoma, were “Native Americans and Republicans” and would be helping with “the Native American effort.”

The Native American effort? This should be good. Especially if it really goes beyond a quick mention at a retreat. Then again, perhaps that effort will start with full funding for U.S. treaty obligations. Now that would be a Native American effort. (To be fair: There is GOP support for direct services, such as Indian health funding. But where it gets complicated is new revenue sources, such as Community Health Centers or Medicaid.)

Instead the real action, the stuff that will impact people living in Indian Country, is far more technical. It’s the budget, the debt ceiling, and the prospect for a logical resolution. "

Get the Story:
Debts to be paid? The House Republicans and their ‘Native American effort’ (Mark Trahant 1/18)

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