Democratic-NPL Lawmakers and Candidates Express Dismay, Frustration with SCOTUS Oklahoma v. Castro-Huerta Decision

Bismarck, ND – In Wednesday’s 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court added to their controversial rulings. The decision expanded the authority of state governments on reservation land. Oklahoma v. Castro-Huerta erodes tribal sovereignty, and cases like it may continue to do so in the future under this Supreme Court. Justice Neil Gorsuch, who sided with the Court’s liberal justices said, “Truly, a more ahistorical and mistaken statement of Indian law would be hard to fathom.”

Rep. Ruth Buffalo remarked, “The recent SCOTUS ruling in OK vs. Castro-Huerta, is shocking. Tribal nations continue to be undermined and treated with a lack of dignity and respect. The SCOTUS needs to stop legislating from the bench. Every level of government needs to uphold the treaties as well as recognize and honor Tribal sovereignty.”

State House Candidate Lisa Finley-DeVille said “The Supreme Court’s decision undermines Tribal Nation’s sovereignty by expanding State’s authority to have control of what happens on our lands. My ancestors fought and died to exercise sovereignty in our tribal territories, a history that predates colonial rule. The decision will further exacerbate the epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous People across Turtle Island.”

“The newly antidemocratic majority of the supreme court is in a hurry to preserve what ails us, in this case, disregarding tribal sovereignty.The court lacks the objectivity to recognize its hubris and will as racist and unjust. The court was honor bound to interpreting the constitution and our laws but is now bound to *far right-wing* activist,” said U.S. Senate Candidate Katrina Christiansen

Attorney General Candidate Tim Lamb asserted, “I support Justice Neil Gorsuch’s reasoning in maintaining the long-standing tradition of respecting tribal territorial sovereignty in criminal matters. The decision further erodes the trust and confidence of precedence under the U.S. Supreme Court, since this decision reverses an earlier decision when there were four liberal-minded justices on the court whom he joined to establish a majority.”

Sen. Tim Mathern, “It appears the voters have been misled again, this Supreme Court has become an activist court! The five Indigenous Nations in North Dakota may suffer the consequence.”