Indian Country politics and public policy

Commentary by Mark Trahant

  Mark Trahant / Trahant Reports A line of trucks and commercial vehicles on North Dakota’s Highway 6 Saturday was a speeding train. One vehicle after another. Traveling too fast and too close. Then, still on track, the entire train turned left and began racing down a rural dirt road. It was clear why: This …

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  Mark Trahant / Trahant Reports Early in the election cycle I made a prediction: I said if Donald Trump was the Republican nominee, the House would be in play for the Democrats. The reaction (and more than once) was 30 seats? Not likely. (Previous: Native candidates could help flip Congress). Not likely are the words …

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Mark Trahant / Trahant Reports We’re about a month away from this election season being over — and so there is a lot going on in the #NativeVote16 universe. (Previous: Make no mistake, Standing Rock is on the ballot.) Let’s start in North Dakota where three Native American candidates are on the ballot statewide, plus …

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  Climate math requires fossil fuel subtraction Mark Trahant / TrahantReports Ten months ago the United States told the world it was ready to do something about climate change. Enough talk. Time to act. And because of the nature of the crisis, the world’s governments are moving quickly. Well, at least as measured by governments. …

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Will Standing Rock stir younger Native voters? Mark Trahant / TrahantReports Will young people vote in 2016? And, more important, at least for our purposes, how about the younger generation of American Indians and Alaska Natives? Let’s explore the first question. Younger voters are perplexing. They are, or should be, the largest group voters, some 75 million. …

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Mark Trahant / TrahantReports It’s time. It’s time for politicians to treat American Indians and Alaska Natives as an important constituency, not an outside group living in our own homeland. The words of North Dakota’s representative in Congress, Kevin Cramer, capture the old thinking perfectly. He told Oil and Gas 360 that the Dakota Access Pipeline …

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Mark Trahant / TrahantReports On social media and in real life we hear this often: “What can I do to help Standing Rock?” Some answer the question by donating money, many send supplies, and hundreds of people jump in their car and travel to the camps near Cannonball, North Dakota. Once there folks pray, some …

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Mark Trahant / TrahantReports On Friday I tweeted: “What an extraordinary day, the federal government has a pulse.” The United States finally weighed in on what many of us believe is the most important issue in the country right now: The question of how this nation will address climate change. And pulse or not this remains …

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Mark Trahant / TrahantReports I’ve been thinking a lot about the silence from the White House on the situation at Standing Rock. There have been so many calls to get involved, including a direct plea from Chairman David Archambault II. So on Wednesday President Obama finally spoke; answering a question in Laos. He cited the …

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