National | Politics

Bernie Sanders won Democratic precinct on Meskwaki Reservation

YouTube: LIVE from the Meskwaki Nation Town Meeting with Bernie Sanders / Bernie2016tv

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton eked out a narrow win in the caucuses in Iowa on Monday night but Indian voters on one reservation showed a lot more support to rival Bernie Sanders.

According to the results from the Democratic party, the Senator from Vermont won a whopping 83.3 percent of the vote at the Indian Settlement precinct in Tama County. Members of the Meskwaki Tribe caucused at their tribal center and only gave 16.7 percent of their votes to Clinton, a former Secretary of State and a former Senator from New York.

Both campaigns reached out to voters on the reservation but Sanders was the only one who went there in person. He discussed the economy, education, Native veterans and other issues at the tribal center on September 4, 2015.

Members of the Meskwaki Tribe of Iowa listen to Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders on September 4, 2015. Photo from Bernie Sanders

“Native Americans know that if you destroy nature you destroy life and that is what we’re doing globally now and that has got to change,” Sanders said, according to his campaign.

Despite the strong showing for Sanders on the reservation, the rest of Tama County went for Clinton. She won 52.9 percent of the vote, compared to 47.1 percent for Sanders. Overall, Clinton won the state by just 0.2 percentage points, according to the results.

As for the Republicans, the party did not put up a precinct on the reservation this year. No one attended the GOP caucus when it was held at the tribal center in January 2012, Mark Trahant reported, citing The New York Times.

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