Dorgan praises Obama support on Law and Order
Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-North Dakota), the chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, welcomed the Obama administration's support for S.797, the Tribal Law and Order Act.

Dorgan introduced the bill in April. It encourages more prosecution of crime in Indian Country, increases penalties for reservation offenders, reauthorizes key programs and establishes consistent protocols to address sexual violence.

The Obama administration testified on the bill in July but did not offer a full endorsement until last week, when Attorney General Eric Holder spoke at the Department of Justice Tribal Nations Listening Conference. "The Justice Department fully supports the bill and we look forward to the day that President Obama signs it into law," he said.

"This is very welcome news," Dorgan said in response. "Native American families have a right to live in a safe and secure environment. The federal government has treaty and trust obligations to see that they do. For much of our history, however, the federal government has done a poor job of meeting those obligations. This legislation aims to help turn that failure around. The President's support for this bill will provide significant help in getting these much needed reforms enacted into law."

The Senate Indian Affairs Committee approved the bill last month. A vote has not been scheduled on the Senate floor.

Committee Notice:
HEARING on S. 797, the Tribal Law and Order Act of 2009 (June 25, 2009)

SCIA Press Release:

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