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Indian Eddie: Tribes wasting money on lobbyists

"In 1996, the cash-strapped Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma depleted their bank account to donate $107,000 to the Democratic Party. I emphasize the word "donate." Tribal leaders were under the impression that in doing so the federal government would return land taken from them to build Fort Reno in El Reno, Okla. Guess what? The federal government still owns the land and renovation and expansion continue at the fort. All the donation got tribal leaders was a rather expensive lunch (not even dinner!) at the White House with Bill Clinton.

When tribal members across the nation are living in poverty, and funding for education and social issues is tight, or nonexistent, the idea of feeding Washington fat cats even pennies is repulsive.

Some blame, though, has to be pinned on tribal leaders who think the only way to get anything done is to funnel money to lobbyists. If they're going to donate money, how about donating money to get legislation passed that would forbid lobbying firms from taking advantage of tribes?"

Get the Story:
Eddie Chuculate: A lesson learned as hill of cash is lost? (The Albuquerque Tribune 3/11)

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