After a primary time period marked by discord with tribal nations, Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt began his second time period by calling tribal leaders to ask them to his inauguration. Simply months earlier, many tribal nations had rallied behind his challenger within the common election.
Stitt and tribal leaders say they now need to discover frequent floor. Leaders of at the very least 12 tribal nations attended his inauguration. Here’s what some tribal leaders needed to say about their choice to attend and the way they hope to work with Stitt sooner or later:
“The present of tribal management conveys a deep respect for the democratic course of. The Caddo Nation seems ahead to a constructive working relationship with the state of Oklahoma, Gov. Stitt, and all state leaders. Working along with different tribes and the state in a constructive manner strengthens all of our communities.” — Caddo Nation assertion on Fb
Chairman Bobby Gonzalez represented the nation on the inauguration.
“I’ve been plain spoken and direct in the case of Oklahoma’s relationship with the Cherokee Nation: We’re the perfect pal the state has ever had, we simply should be handled with respect. I stand for this concept regardless of who holds political workplace within the state and with out concern or favor. However, I additionally acknowledge that respect is a two-way road.
“Our relationship with the state of Oklahoma is an indispensable one. We will, and we should, proceed fiercely defending Cherokee sovereignty and likewise discover methods to work with the state on a variety of points. We now have been (working) on a bipartisan foundation with pals all through state authorities. A profitable Oklahoma is nice for Cherokee Nation, and vice versa.” — Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr.
Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes
“The tribes have at all times felt that the state of Oklahoma is simply as related and valuable to the tribes as it’s to any elected official, as a result of we we’re not coming and going. We’re at all times going to be right here. And we’ve executed a lot to pour into our communities and into our areas that we’ve got our pursuits in and the place our reservation areas are …
“We’re vested within the native areas simply as a lot as anyone on the state Capitol is. So, I consider that if the governor works with the tribes in a fashion that all of us prefer to see, I feel that the state of Oklahoma may really create much more jobs and and do some nice issues.” — Gov. Reggie Wassana
“We look ahead to working with state leaders in a wide range of intergovernmental subjects that may profit each Chickasaws and our neighbors throughout Oklahoma. We welcome alternatives to work collectively for the betterment of those that name Oklahoma dwelling.” — Gov. Invoice Anoatubby
“It’s my accountability to take care of open communication with elected officers, particularly these throughout the state of Oklahoma. You can not successfully advocate in your constituency by standing on the sidelines. Defending tribal sovereignty requires you to point out up.” — Principal Chief Geoffrey Standing Bear
“We’re hopeful that this inauguration does sign a brand new day, as a result of the outdated days aren’t working for our folks or the residents of Oklahoma. We desire to have a relationship of mutual respect, with actions and precise communication. We each have a shared responsibility, and that’s what ought to inspire us to attain extra collectively.” — Principal Chief David Hill
“The Choctaw Nation and Oklahoma’s elected leaders share a typical aim: Enhancing situations for all Oklahomans. In Gov. Stitt’s second time period, we hope he’ll settle for our invitation to work cooperatively on points that have an effect on our communities, whereas respecting tribal sovereignty and the financial and cultural contributions tribes make to our nice state.” — Chief Gary Batton, who didn’t attend the inauguration due to prior plans.
E mail reporter Molly Younger so as to add your tribal nation’s perspective to this text.
Molly Younger covers Indigenous affairs for the USA Right this moment Community’s Sunbelt Area. Attain her at email@example.com or 405-347-3534.