Cole introduces legislation in response to McGirt vs. Oklahoma

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Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) on Tuesday introduced legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives related to last summer’s ruling on McGirt vs. Oklahoma by the Supreme Court of the United States.

If enacted, the legislation would authorize the Chickasaw Nation, Cherokee Nation and the State of Oklahoma to find agreement and compact without federal government involvement. It would also address the immediate issues facing law enforcement as a result of the ruling.

“Consistent with the diligent work done and progress made with state and tribal partners, this legislation does not mandate how Oklahoma, the Chickasaw Nation and the Cherokee Nation should come to agreement,” explained the congressman.

The ruling not only affected law enforcement by the state and the tribes, but also regulatory control of energy matters such as oil and gas operations.

Cole said the legislation would give the tribes and the state government “an avenue to decide independently, rightly ensuring that any decision directly affecting Oklahoma or these tribes is made at the state and local level.”

Rep. Cole said his bill, if adopted, would provide an immediate solution to the issues facing law enforcement.