Oklahoma Congressman Markwayne Mullin, a member of the Cherokee Nation and one of only four Native American members of Congress says the state and the Indian tribes should proceed with caution in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that applied to the Muscogee (Creek) Nation.
In a statement on Friday, the Republican Representative said the state and the tribes should not rush into any new federal legislation to resolve the many questions that exist, including those applying to the energy industry. He referenced the many questions that came out of the Mcgirt v. Oklahoma ruling, especially those regarding the Major Crimes Act and concerns regarding law enforcement jurisdiction.
“As a sovereign nation, Muscogee (Creek) Nation has full authority to do the same to resolve any jurisdictional questions and concerns. Right now, we need to clarify the process for implementing these jurisdictional agreements related to MCA without seeking federal legislation impacting the McGirt decision,” said Rep. Mullin.
“As we look beyond McGirt’s impact on the MCA and Muscogee (Creek), there will be a need for legislation. However, instead of moving too quickly and causing unintended consequences which negatively impact generations of Oklahomans to come, we must be conscious and deliberate in our efforts to ensure we get this right,” he added. “We look forward to continuing to work with local law enforcement to ensure Oklahoma’s continued success for generations to come.”
“We believe in the open line of communication that our office has established with Congressman Mullin,” Muscogee (Creek) Nation Principal Chief David Hill said. “I had a good phone call with the Congressman earlier this week. He told me that this is a Muscogee (Creek) Nation issue, and he is glad to see that we are making efforts to work with our State and local government partners to resolve any issues that may arise in the Creek Reservation.”
“I concur that the Supreme Court’s decision will have a lasting impact on all of the Five Tribes,” The Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma Chief Gary Batton said. “We need to take time to truly understand the full scope of the McGirt ruling and avoid unintended consequences for generations to come.”
“Congressman Mullin has indicated to the Cherokee Nation that federal legislation will be necessary after the McGirt ruling to resolve any jurisdictional gaps within our reservation boundaries,” Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. said. “I am confident that Congressman Mullin will work to protect our reservation land, sovereignty, and well-being of our citizens, particularly our women. I appreciate his leadership and willingness to engage the Five Tribes in this important effort.”
“The Supreme Court’s ruling in favor of the Muscogee Creek Nation’s Reservational boundaries was fair and just,” Seminole Nation of Oklahoma Chief Greg P. Chilcoat said. “Long ago, our ancestors were promised their sovereignty and the McGirt ruling finally delivered it.”
Source: Rep. Mullin