April 08, 2007

Indians run for office

Going native in state capitals

No longer cynical about 'this system,' Indians, Hawaiians and Alaskans have a higher profile than ever in legislatures.When legislatures convened earlier this year, at least 73 Indian, native Alaskan or native Hawaiian lawmakers were sworn in, the highest number in the nation's history, according to the National Congress of American Indians, a tribal advocacy group.

Oklahoma has the most native legislators, with 19, while Hawaii and Montana have 10 each, followed by Alaska with eight.

Casino wealth and other development have made Native Americans increasingly politically active as they deal with regulation of their businesses as well as access to state funds for healthcare, tribal policing and other matters.

No comments: