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Campbell defends two-word change to NAGPRA

Outgoing Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell (R-Colorado) says a bill that would change the definition of Native American does not mean four Pacific Northwest tribes will be able to claim the Kennewick Man.

Campbell is sponsoring a technical corrections bill that adds the words "or was" to the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act of 1990. The change is designed so that remains and artifacts not linked to present-day tribes can still be repatriated.

Campbell's office says the bill still requires tribes to show a "cultural affiliation" to remains and artifacts. In the case of the Kennewick Man, four tribes proved their case to the Interior Department. But a federal judge and an appeals court disagreed, prompting the proposed change in the definition of Native American.

The bill could pass during the lame-duck session by a voice vote.

Get the Story:
Bill Would Redefine Indian Tribe (The Washington Post 11/17)

Relevant Documents:
S.2843 | Public Law 101-601: NAGPRA | Senate Testimony | 2004 NAGPRA Report

Court Decision:
BONNICHSEN v. US (February 4, 2004)

Relevant Links:
Kennewick Man, Department of Interior -
Friends of America's Past -
Kennewick Man Virtual Interpretive Center, The Tri-City (Washington) Herald -

Related Stories:
Editorial: Campbell shouldn't mess with NAGPRA (10/15)
Editorial: Campbell's two words of mischief in NAGPRA (10/13)
Editorial: Campbell should not interfere with NAGPRA (10/05)
Campbell-backed bill adds two words to NAGPRA (10/1)
Battle over Kennewick Man study far from over (08/02)
Editorial: Let Kennewick Man speak! (say what?) (07/22)
Column: Kennewick Man belongs to everyone (7/21)
Tribes to seek restrictions on Kennewick Man study (7/20)
Tribes drop Kennewick Man claim in court (7/20)
Repatriation process criticized at Senate hearing (07/15)
Editorial: It's about time Kennewick Man case ends (04/29)
Tribes debate next step in Kennewick Man case (04/27)
Kennewick rehearing denied (4/21)
Court rules scientists can study Kennewick Man (02/05)
Kennewick Man battle back in court (9/8)
Tribes file opening brief in Kennewick Man case (03/19)
Appeals court asked to stop Kennewick Man tests (01/23)
Norton treads uncharted waters over remains (4/11)