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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Will the Supreme Court return eastern Oklahoma to the Five Tribes?

    Will the Supreme Court return eastern Oklahoma to the Five Tribes?

    Friday, May 8, 2020
    By Albert Bender
    People's World
    peoplesworld.org

    The case of McGirt v. Oklahoma sits at the top of the Supreme Court docket as the Indian law case that will decide the issue of whether eastern Oklahoma will be returned to reservation status. Oral arguments in this matter had been scheduled for April 21, but the Supreme Court delayed the hearing to June due to COVID-19, but has now announced McGirt will be heard on May 11, 2020, presumably by teleconference.

    This issue began with what is now known as the case of Sharp v. Murphy.

    This cause of action was previously known as Carpenter v. Murphy and Royal v. Murphy to reflect that this case has been pending through three different wardens in the Oklahoma penal system.

    Some minimal background in this matter is helpful for the uninformed.

    The petitioner who originally raised this issue was Patrick Wayne Murphy, an enrolled member of the Muscogee Creek Nation (MCN) of Oklahoma, convicted of murder in Oklahoma state court in 2000.
    Indian Country had been waiting on the U.S. Supreme Court to reach a decision in the case of Sharp v. Murphy.

    The Court, if ruling according to firmly established precedent, would have to return three million acres of eastern Oklahoma to the Muscogee Creek Nation, and as a monumental ripple effect would result in the return of an additional 16 million acres to the other four southern nations—the Cherokee, Choctaw, Chickasaw, and Seminole—forcibly removed, in the 19th century, from their ancient homelands.

    These nations, collectively and historically called the Five Civilized Tribes (a term of colonial European origin, unpleasant because of its implicit racism, better replaced by Five Tribes or Five Southern Tribes) are sovereign governmental entities with outstanding political impact.

    The argument of the Murphy case is that the Muscogee Creek Nation, where the crime for which Murphy was convicted occurred, was never disestablished. Therefore, Murphy, who is an enrolled tribal citizen, should never have been tried in state court as only federal courts have jurisdiction under the Major Crimes Act of 1885.

    The case went to the United States Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver, which ruled in favor of Murphy. The state of Oklahoma appealed this decision to the Supreme Court.
    The overarching issue is whether most of eastern Oklahoma is still the reservations of the Five Tribes. The Court could not reach a decision in its last term as it was hopelessly deadlocked 4-4.

    The ninth Justice, Neil Gorsuch, who has extensive expertise in American Indian law and could have broken the tie, recused himself from the matter because he participated in the case when it was heard before the 10th Circuit Court on which he sat at that time.
    On the last day of the Supreme Court’s last term on June 27, the Court announced it would rehear arguments in Sharp v. Murphy in its new term which started in October. But that never happened, probably because the deadlock would not be broken as long as the court was minus a judge.

    This brings in McGirt v. Oklahoma, involving the same Indian law issues, with an appeal from an Oklahoma state court conviction, that would be heard by the full nine-member court. The crimes in this case also were committed within the historic boundaries of the MCN.This new case on the docket involves Jimcy McGirt, a member of the Seminole Nation who was convicted of sex crimes against a child by the state of Oklahoma within the historic Indian boundaries in 1997. Based on the decision issued by the 10th Circuit, McGirt argued that only the federal government could prosecute him. The McGirt litigation has the same issues as the Murphy case. Do the 1866 territorial boundaries of the Muscogee Creek Nation within the former Indian Territory of eastern Oklahoma still constitute an “Indian reservation” today under federal law?Like Murphy, McGirt argues that the MCN continued to exercise sovereignty after Oklahoma statehood.

    The case law is in favor of the Indigenous petitioner, set by Supreme Court precedents beginning with Solem v. Bartlett (1984), which held that the opening up of reservation lands for settlement to non-Indians does not constitute the required Congressional intent to disestablish or to diminish reservation boundaries.

    The 10th Circuit found that all three million acres of the MCN reservation, whether owned by Indians, non-Indians, state or city governments, was still “Indian Country.”

    The MCN reservation was still in existence!
    In another later case, Nebraska v. Parker (2016), involving the same issues, the Supreme Court took into account other factors in reaching its decision which can be used in the McGirt case and will identically relate to the arguments raised in Murphy.

    The Court ruled that the “demographic history” of the land in question could be examined (whether there was still a Native presence on the land in contention).
    The Court first looked at the issue of non-Indian presence on the land and concluded that this was not determinative in reaching a decision. The Court also found that the Omaha Tribe in Nebraska had been absent from the land for 120 years and had not enforced its laws or offered any services in the area. But still, the Court found that it could not override the lack of explicit Congressional intent to diminish the reservation. The Court found in favor of the Tribe, despite the lack of Native presence and services.

    In reference to eastern Oklahoma, in regard to Native presence and the offering of services, there is just the opposite demographic situation.
    The issue of Indian presence and services offered in the matter of eastern Oklahoma works overwhelmingly in favor of the Indigenous nations.

    Eastern Oklahoma is home to tens of thousands of Native Americans with a huge social, economic, and cultural impact on the region.

    Additionally, the governments of the Five Southern Tribes are functioning polities exercising an outstanding sovereign presence encompassing extensive social services and law enforcement entities. The Five Tribes are justly awaiting the rightful return of tribal lands taken by the federal government in a most egregious violation of law and sacred treaties circa the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

    In the Murphy case, which features essentially the same arguments presented in the McGirt matter, the petitioner contended that the land on which the crime was committed was still part of the MCN Reservation guaranteed in the Treaty of 1866.

    When Murphy went before the 10th Circuit, the court ruled that it could not find any statute diminishing or disestablishing the reservation. There was no Congressional intent to end the reservation. The reservation still existed. The Supreme Court should have found it easy to reach a decision.
    In Solem, the Supreme Court established three principles to determine Congressional intent to diminish or disestablish a reservation.

    First, only Congress has the authority to diminish reservation boundaries. The Court stated that “once a block of land is set aside for an Indian reservation and no matter what happens to the title of the individual plots within the area, the entire block retains its reservation status until Congress explicitly states otherwise.”

    Second, the Court ruled that the intent to diminish or disestablish will not be lightly presumed. Since only Congress has this power, it must clearly state the intent to disestablish or diminish or make an overt statement from which the intent can be inferred. Third, the intent to diminish or disestablish can be determined by legislative history.

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    An example of diminishment is the case of Hagen v. Utah (1994), where the Court, using the principles laid down in Solem, ruled that Congress had intentionally diminished reservation lands with surplus land acts affecting the Uintah Reservation in northeastern Utah. The Court decided that the specific language “be restored to the public domain” in the Hagen case in reference to the surplus lands unambiguously indicated that the area in dispute was not to remain reservation land, but in fact reduced the reservation boundaries.The principles of Solem, presented to determine whether Congress had disestablished the MCN reservation, came forth in Sharp v. Murphy as to whether a Native person convicted of murder should be under the state of Oklahoma’s jurisdiction if the reservation was disestablished or the federal government if the reservation was still extant.

    The 10th Circuit, applying Solem, ruled that Congress did not disestablish the MCN Reservation. Again, the decision had been scheduled for rehearing by the Supreme Court in its 2019 term as it had deadlocked 4-4 unable to reach a decision.

    Subsequently, the Court left Murphy in legal limbo and elected to hear the McGirt case on the same overarching issues.
    Again, in the area of eastern Oklahoma being contested, there is a major Indian presence—the Five Tribes—that has been extant in the disputed area for over 180 years. They contribute millions of dollars to the economy of the state every year. For example, the Cherokee Nation alone contributed from gaming operations $18 million in revenue to the state in the last fiscal year, and some $116 over the last eight years. Overall, the Cherokee Nation contributed in 2019 almost $2.2 billion into the state economy from its businesses by way of employment, labor income, and production of goods and services.Additionally, the Cherokee health system takes the burden off overworked private and state facilities.

    The Nation also puts millions of dollars into economic development for small towns in the region. For pre-K and higher education, more millions have been provided by the Nation. The Cherokee Nation also builds public roads and bridges and brings clean and reliable water to the region’s rural areas. Together, the Five Tribes provide firefighters, paramedics, and police officers to rural Oklahoma communities that, otherwise, they could not adequately provide on their own.
    There is also the issue (although not addressed at this time) of the legality of the attempted permanent dismantling of the governments of the Five Southern Tribes by the federal government over 100 years ago. This brings forth the huge related issue of whether the U.S. government actually has plenary power over U.S. Indigenous nations.In this regard, most notably Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has his own serious doubts of U.S. plenary power over Native nations, something which he has raised over the years. In 2004, Thomas took the unheard of step of directly and vehemently challenging the Congressional claim of plenary power over Indian affairs. In his concurring opinion in United States v. Lara (2004), he wrote: “I cannot agree that the Indian Commerce Clause provides Congress with plenary power to legislate in the field of Indian affairs. At one time, the implausibility of this assertion at least troubled the Court, and I would be willing to revisit the question.”

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    Also, questioned by Thomas was the constitutionality of Congress’s 1871 law ending the long established practice of treaty-making with Indigenous nations as infringing on the constitutional powers of the executive branch. The core of Thomas’s concern is that federal Indian law would remain constrained in a maze of confusion and contradictions between two opposing principles: On the one hand, Congress possesses plenary power over Indian nations, while on the other hand, Indigenous nations have retained inherent self-determination as sovereign, independent states.The retention of inherent sovereignty would render the exercise of plenary power illegal.

    This is earthshaking. The ramifications are huge. The paramount issues being raised under U.S. and international law are respectively: Does the Indian Commerce Clause give Congress plenary power over Indigenous nations? Does the assertion of military conquest confer plenary power over Indigenous peoples?
    Justice Thomas said further in Lara:

    “The Court should admit that it has failed in its quest to find a source of Congressional power to adjust tribal sovereignty.” This is of potentially seismic importance. Lack of plenary power would have enormous, monumental consequences for the entire country.

    In the meanwhile, the legal duty and moral obligation of the Supreme Court is crystal clear: Return eastern Oklahoma to the Five Southern Tribes.


    Albert Bender is a Cherokee activist, historian, political columnist, and freelance reporter for Native and Non-Native publications. He was an organizer and delegate to the First and Second Intercontinental Indian Conferences held in Quito, Ecuador and Quetzaltenango, Guatemala. Recently, he has been an active participant and reporter in the Standing Rock struggle in North Dakota. He is an attorney and is currently writing a legal treatise on Native American sovereignty. He is also writing a book on the war crimes committed by the U.S. against the Maya people in the Guatemalan civil war of the late 20th century. He is also the recipient of several Eagle Awards by the Tennessee Native American Eagle Organization and a former Director of Native American Legal Departments and a Tribal Public Defender.

    https://www.indianz.com/News/2020/05...eastern-ok.asp
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    Supreme Court Rules Nearly Half of Oklahoma Is Indian Reservation

    WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that nearly half of Oklahoma falls within an Indian reservation, a decision that could reshape the ...
    The New York Times 13 minutes ago


    Supreme Court rules broad swath of Oklahoma is Native American land for purposes of federal criminal law

    Washington (CNN) The Supreme Court said Thursday that a large swath of eastern Oklahoma, including Tulsa, is Native American land for purposes of federal ...
    CNN 29 minutes ago



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  5. #5
    Super Moderator GeorgiaPeach's Avatar
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    Supreme Court: Nearly Half Of Oklahoma Is Indian Reservation


    July 9, 2020

    Tyler Durden


    While all eyes were on the Supreme Court's Thursday decision granting New York prosecutors access to President Trump's taxes, a ruling earlier in the day recognized roughly half of Oklahoma as an Indian reservation - in a move which could have wide-ranging legal implications for the 1.8 million people who now live in "Indian Country," according to the New York Times.

    The decision, authored by Justice Neil Gorsuch, holds the United States to an 1866 treaty that the Muscogee (Creek) Nation signed with the United Statesafter the Civil War over land which was home to the "Five Civilized Tribes"; the Creek, Cherokee Nation, the Seminole, the Chickasaw Nation, and the Choctaw Nation, according toThe New Republic.

    "Today we are asked whether the land these treaties promised remains an Indian reservation for purposes of federal criminal law," wrote Gorsuch, a Trump appointee. "Because Congress has not said otherwise, we hold the government to its word."

    Joining Gorsuch in the majority were Justices Sonya Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, Stephen Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, while Justices Alito, Kavanaugh, Roberts and Clarence Thomas argued in the minority - siding with the state of Oklahoma.

    "A century of practice confirms that the Five Tribes’ prior domains were extinguished," wrote Roberts. "The State has maintained unquestioned jurisdiction for more than 100 years. Tribe members make up less than 10%–15% of the population of their former domain, and until a few years ago the Creek Nation itself acknowledged that it no longer possessed the reservation the Court discovers today."

    Roberts added that "The State’s ability to prosecute serious crimes will be hobbled and decades of past convictions could well be thrown out," and that "The decision today creates significant uncertainty for the State’s continuing authority over any area that touches Indian affairs, ranging from zoning and taxation to family and environmental law."

    The original case (via the New York Times):



    The case concerned Jimcy McGirt, a member of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation who was convicted of sex crimes against a child by state authorities in the Nation’s historical boundaries. He said that only federal authorities were entitled to prosecute him.

    Mr. McGirt argued that Congress had never clearly destroyed the sovereignty of the Creek Nation over the area, covering about half the state. The solicitor general of Oklahoma took the opposite view, saying the area had never been reservation land.

    McGirt v. Oklahoma, No. 18-9526, an appeal from a state court’s decision, was the Supreme Court’s second attempt to resolve the status of eastern Oklahoma.

    In November 2018, the justices heard arguments in Sharp v. Murphy, No. 17-1107, which arose from the prosecution in state court of Patrick Murphy, a Creek Indian, for murdering George Jacobs in rural McIntosh County, east of Oklahoma City.

    After he was sentenced to death, it emerged that the murder had taken place on what had once been Indian land. Mr. Murphy argued that only the federal government could prosecute him and that a federal law barred the imposition of the death penalty because he was an Indian.

    Mr. Murphy convinced the United States Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit, in Denver. But when the case was argued before an eight-member Supreme Court, the justices seemed divided and troubled. (Justice Neil M. Gorsuch, who had served on the 10th Circuit when it ruled on the case, recused himself.)


    Instead of issuing a decision before the term ended in June 2019, the court announced it would hear another set of arguments in its current term, which started in October. That was a sign the court had deadlocked, 4 to 4.

    But there was no new argument in the Murphy case, probably because it was not clear another hearing would break the deadlock. Instead, the court heard Mr. McGirt’s case, allowing the overarching issue to be settled by a nine-member court.


    Muscogee tribal leaders cheered the ruling, vowing to work with state and federal law-enforcement authorities to ensure public safety within the reservation, according to the Times.

    "This is a historic day," said Principal Chief David Hill. "This is amazing. It’s never too late to make things right."

    https://www.zerohedge.com/political/...an-reservation
    Last edited by GeorgiaPeach; 07-09-2020 at 06:22 PM.
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  6. #6
    Super Moderator GeorgiaPeach's Avatar
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    Supreme Court holds much of Oklahoma is Native American land


    The state cannot prosecute Native defendants for crimes on Native land.


    July 9, 2020

    Lauren Lantry




    The Supreme Court, in a 5-4 ruling on Thursday, held that nearly half of Oklahoma – home to 1.8 million residents – should be considered Native American territory, meaning that any Native American resident on Native American land cannot be tried under state criminal court, and must be tried federally.


    “Today we are asked whether the land these treaties promised remains an Indian reservation for purposes of federal criminal law,” Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote in the majority opinion.

    “Because Congress has not said otherwise, we hold the government to its word,” he wrote.


    Gorsuch was joined by the four liberal justices in a ruling that is one of the largest legal victories for tribes in decades.



    The U.S. Supreme Court is seen on June 30, 2020 in Washington, DC.Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images


    The specific case involved Jimcy McGirt, a member of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma. Previously, an Oklahoma state court convicted McGirt of three sexual offenses, including sexually assaulting his wife’s four-year-old granddaughter. But McGirt argued that the Oklahoma state court cannot prosecute him because he is Native American, and his crime occurred on an Indian reservation.

    His argument relies upon the Major Crimes Act, which gives federal authorities – not state courts – jurisdiction over crimes involving a Native American on Native American land.


    “State courts generally have no jurisdiction to try Indians for conduct committed in ‘Indian country,’” Gorsuch wrote, adding, “If Mr. McGirt and the Tribe are right, the State has no right to prosecute Indians for crimes committed in a portion of Northeastern Oklahoma that includes most of the city of Tulsa. Responsibility to try these matters would fall instead to the federal government and Tribe.”


    The major dispute was whether McGirt’s crimes were committed on a reservation – the majority of the court ruled that they did. According to an 1866 treaty, the land on which McGirt committed his crime was given to Native Americans and was described as a reservation.
    The state of Oklahoma state, along with the four conservative dissenting justices, argued that the land was not an Indian reservation.


    "But, in seeking to defend the state-court judgment below, Oklahoma has put aside whatever procedural defenses it might have and asked us to confirm that the land once given to the Creeks is no longer a reservation today,” the majority said.


    In his dissenting opinion, Chief Justice John Roberts argued that the reservation land was “disestablished.”


    “None of this is warranted,” Roberts wrote. “What has gone unquestioned for a century remains true today: A huge portion of Oklahoma is not a Creek Indian reservation. Congress disestablished any reservation in a series of statutes leading up to Oklahoma statehood at the turn of the 19th century. The Court reaches the opposite conclusion only by disregarding the ‘well settled’ approach required by our precedents.”


    Roberts also argued that this decision could destabilize much of Oklahoma, writing “the State’s ability to prosecute serious crimes will be hobbled and decades of past convictions could well be thrown out.”


    Tribal leaders insist that the decision will be less destabilizing than critics have feared. They note that the ruling does not change land ownership in eastern Oklahoma. Creek Nation officials are working with state and federal officials to design a public safety and regulatory agreement between the separate governments to maintain the area.

    Gorsuch wrote that under the Constitution, states have no authority to reduce reservations within their borders – that can only be done by Congress.


    In his opinion, delivered less than a week after President Donald Trump visited Mount Rushmore – a site considered sacred by many Native Americans – Gorsuch referenced the centuries-long history of Native American people and land being dominated and taken advantage of by the United States government.


    “The federal government promised the Creek a reservation in perpetuity,” Gorsuch wrote towards the close of the majority’s opinion. “Over time, Congress has diminished that reservation. It has sometimes restricted and other times expanded the Tribe’s authority. But Congress has never withdrawn the promised reservation.”
    “As a result, many of the arguments before us today follow a sadly familiar pattern. Yes, promises were made, but the price of keeping them has become too great, so now we should just cast a blind eye. We reject that thinking. If Congress wishes to withdraw its promises, it must say so,” Gorsuch wrote.


    “For MCA purposes, land reserved for the Creek Nation since the 19th century remains ‘Indian country.’”


    ABC News' Devin Dwyer contributed to this report.

    https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/supr...ry?id=71697590
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Wait until the tribe orders everyone off their land.
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  8. #8
    Super Moderator GeorgiaPeach's Avatar
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    Supreme Court rules Muscogee (Creek) Nation historic boundaries never disestablished by Congress






    • July 9, 2020





    The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday redefined what for decades federal and state prosecutors thought had been “Indian Country” in eastern Oklahoma when it comes to crime enforcement jurisdictional purposes.

    The court upheld challenges from two American Indians who claimed criminal cases prosecuted against them in state court should have been tried in federal court because Congress never disestablished the 19th Century boundaries of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation reservation.




    Since statehood, state courts have heard criminal cases where jurisdiction was considered to be on nontribal-owned land, while federal courts have handled “major crimes” that occurred on land tribally owned, referred to as “Indian Country.”

    The decisions Thursday mean Oklahoma prosecutors lack authority to pursue charges against American Indian defendants in much of eastern Oklahoma, including the city of Tulsa. It also throws into question the convictions of hundreds of American Indian defendants.

    Crimes not involving American Indians will continue to be prosecuted in state courts.

    Both the state and area tribes, in a joint statement, downplayed any concerns the ruling might cause down the road.

    Prior to the ruling, both state and federal officials predicted a decision against the state could throw criminal prosecutions there into chaos.

    The 5-4 decision in one case, written by Associate Justice Neil M. Gorsuch, noted the concern from those opposing the decision.

    “The federal government promised the Creek a reservation in perpetuity,” Gorsuch wrote, in a case filed by 71-year-old Jimcy McGirt.

    “Yes, promises were made, but the price of keeping them has become too great, so now we should just cast a blind eye.”

    “We reject that thinking,” Gorsuch continued. “If Congress wishes to withdraw its promise, it must say so. Unlawful acts, performed long enough and with sufficient vigor, are never enough to amend the law. To hold otherwise would be to elevate the most brazen and longstanding injustices over the law, both rewarding wrong and failing those in the right.”

    Only Congress has the power to disestablish or reduce the boundaries of a tribal reservation.

    Associate Justices Stephen G. Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor joined Gorsuch in his majority opinion.

    The decision reverses lower state court rulings against McGirt. A second, one-page decision in the case of Patrick Dwayne Murphy upholds a federal appellate court decision that overturned his death sentence. McGirt and Murphy are respective members of the Seminole and Muscogee (Creek) Nations.

    Both men challenged the long-held belief by most that the state of Oklahoma since statehood had jurisdiction over crimes committed on non-American Indian-owned land in eastern Oklahoma.

    The two men claimed the 19th century-era historical boundaries of the Creek Nation, which covered an 11-county region of eastern Oklahoma, including most of Tulsa, were never disestablished by Congress.

    McGirt is serving a life without parole prison term, in addition to two, 500-year sentences, after he was convicted in the 1996 rape, sodomy and lewd molestation of a minor in Wagoner County.

    McGirt’s case, which is similar to Murphy’s jurisdictional challenge, sprung ahead after the court withheld a decision on Murphy’s case last fall, leading some to speculate that there might be a 4-4 tie in the case with Gorsuch recusing because he was on the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver when the Murphy case was decided.

    Gorsuch did not take part in the Murphy ruling, which held the appellate court decision.

    Murphy, 51, had challenged on jurisdictional grounds his conviction in the 1999 murder of a man in McIntosh County.

    Murphy, like McGirt, claimed his conviction and death sentence should be vacated because the state of Oklahoma did not have jurisdiction to prosecute him.




    The 10th Circuit ruled in favor of Murphy, relying on prior U.S. Supreme Court rulings to determine that Congress had never disestablished the Creek Nation tribal boundaries established in 1866.

    Prior to the ruling, attorneys for the state and federal government issued dire predictions if the reservation was found to not have been legally disestablished.

    “Oklahoma stands on the brink of the most radical jurisdictional shift since statehood,” attorneys for the state of Oklahoma argued in a reply brief filed with the Supreme Court in the Murphy case.

    The federal government backed the state of Oklahoma’s opposition to the “never disestablished” theory advanced by Murphy and McGirt.

    “The federal government lacks sufficient investigatory and prosecutorial resources in the area to handle that volume of cases; the FBI currently has the equivalent of seven agents for all of eastern Oklahoma,” attorneys for the U.S. Justice Department wrote.

    Statements today from those on both sides of the cases were more muted as to the practical effects of the decision.

    The state’s three U.S. attorneys downplayed any strife that could develop from the decision.

    “As Oklahoma’s United States Attorneys, we are confident tribal, state, local and federal law enforcement will work together to continue providing exceptional public safety under this new ruling by the United States Supreme Court,” the written statement said.

    A statement from the state of Oklahoma and five major Oklahoma tribes echoed the spirit of working together.

    “The State, the Muscogee (Creek), Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, and Seminole Nations have made substantial progress toward an agreement to present to Congress and the U.S. Department of Justice addressing and resolving any significant jurisdictional issues raised by the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in McGirt v. Oklahoma,” the statement read.

    “The Nations and the State are committed to ensuring that Jimcy McGirt, Patrick Murphy, and all other offenders face justice for the crimes for which they are accused. We have a shared commitment to maintaining public safety and long-term economic prosperity for the Nations and Oklahoma.

    “The Nations and the State are committed to implementing a framework of shared jurisdiction that will preserve sovereign interests and rights to self-government while affirming jurisdictional understandings, procedures, laws, and regulations that support public safety, our economy, and private property rights. We will continue our work, confident that we can accomplish more together than any of us could alone.”

    Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum issued the following statement after the ruling:

    “Muscogee (Creek) citizens founded Tulsa, and our successes and challenges are shared,” Bynum wrote. “They were before the Court’s opinion, and they will continue to be. We remain committed to the same strong cooperative relationship we have had for decades with the Creek Nation, and to the shared obligation among all jurisdictions — city, tribal, county, state, and federal — to serve all Tulsans, city and tribal residents alike.

    “For most residents and most purposes, recognition of tribal boundaries will not even be noticeable. Importantly, the Court’s opinion does not affect private property ownership. Where there is any jurisdictional uncertainty, we will work with our partners to develop mutually respectful cooperative agreements, such as our Intergovernmental Cross-Deputization Agreement, which has been working well for nearly two decades.

    “This decision will inevitably present further questions of jurisdiction and authority that will need to be resolved. I am grateful that this decision would arrive at a time when we have such a good working relationship between the City of Tulsa and the Creek Nation. I am committed to working with Principal Chief David Hill and his colleagues in the government of the Creek Nation to collaboratively address any issues as they arise.

    “Finally, I am certain Creek Nation officials join me in condemning the abhorrent crimes of the Petitioner in this particular case, and I am confident that the Creek Nation and federal authorities will hold him accountable.”

    Chief Justice John G. Roberts wrote a dissenting opinion, joined by the three remaining associate justices, Samuel A. Alito, Brett M. Kavanaugh and Clarence Thomas.

    “As the Creek, the State of Oklahoma, the United States and our judicial predecessors have long agreed, Congress disestablished any Creek reservation more than 100 years ago,” Roberts wrote. “Oklahoma therefore had jurisdiction to prosecute McGirt. I respectfully dissent.”

    The historic tribal boundaries cover an 11-county region in Oklahoma that includes Creek, Hughes, McIntosh, Okfuskee, Okmulgee and Wagoner counties and portions of Mayes, Muskogee, Rogers, Seminole and Tulsa counties.




    https://www.tulsaworld.com/news/loca...bad7f32.html#1


    Last edited by GeorgiaPeach; 07-09-2020 at 10:04 PM.
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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