Turtle Talk: Supreme Court singling out tribes for damage cases
"It’s a long enough answer, full of subjectivity, but worth discussion in the context of the United States v. Tohono O’odham Nation case, to be argued Nov. 1.

Why is this case so important? There’s no split in authority to be seen, and there hasn’t even been a judgment against the United States yet. So under Supreme Court Rule 10, we’re left with “importance” or the “gross error” of the lower court.

The real question is whether the United States must defend two sets of claims filed in different courts. Money claims against the U.S. are normally filed in the Court of Federal Courts, and other claims can be filed in district court. TON filed a claim for equitable relief in DCT, and then a money damages claim in the CFC. The question is whether both claims are allowable under 28 USC 1500 (in other words, are they different claims).

So what’s so important about this case? Why now? Why not wait to see if the government loses a money judgment?"

Get the Story:
Why Does the Supreme Court Grant Cert Petitions Almost Exclusively Against Tribal Interests? (Turtle Talk 10/14)

Related Stories:
Supreme Court sets November 1 hearing for first Indian law case (09/29)
Supreme Court accepts Tohono O'odham trust law case (4/19)
Tribes working to keep cases away from Supreme Court (3/31)
Federal Circuit ruling in Tohono O'odham trust case (3/16)