Article, “The Timbisha Decision – A Familiar Story and Dangerous Precedent”

Christopher Foley, attorney at The Indian Law Resource Center, has published an article criticizing the most recent court decision in the Death Valley Timbisha Shoshone case.

Link to article here

From the article:

The Death Valley Timbisha Shoshone Tribe was dealt another setback last week in its ongoing efforts to preserve its constitutional government in the face of persistent federal interference.

On May 27, 2016, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued a disappointing decision in the Tribe’s federal lawsuit asserting that the Interior Department’s installation of a new Timbisha government was illegal. The court did not rule on the claims of the Tribe that the Bureau of Indian Affairs had acted illegally. Instead, the court simply said that the case was moot, that deciding those issues would make no difference. The court erroneously found that a tribal constitution that was purportedly adopted in 2014 should retroactively govern this case, and it decided all this without any factual record and no trial at which to present evidence.

This is a familiar story. The United States government claims to support tribal sovereignty and to respect self-government, but when it wants to overrule or take over a tribe it simply does so. It is rarely stopped or restrained by the courts.

Previous coverage here

This entry was posted in Author: Victoria Sweet, Bureau of Indian Affairs, tribal constitutions, tribal election and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Article, “The Timbisha Decision – A Familiar Story and Dangerous Precedent”

  1. Tiger Paulk says:

    Washburn penned a decision in his final days in an attempt to do exactly the same thing to the California Valley Miwok Tribe. He did not allow Rosette and Associates to consult or offer filings at any point in the process. It is soon to be litigated and it is a shame that the courts offer no real justice under what is supposed to be the letter of the law, but what else can a small and poor tribe do without other alternatives.

  2. Lara/Trace says:

    They legislate us to death

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