IN EVERY ELECTION, THE NATIVE VOTE IS IMPORTANT.
Many experts say the Native vote has been the deciding factor in elections across the country in recent years. In Oklahoma, there are 38 federally recognized tribes and those identifying as American Indian over 18 years of age, make-up 12.1% of the population, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, 2016 Population Estimates.
If this 12.1% mobilized and took action, the tides could turn in elections with the significant power of the Native vote. It’s important for our tribal members to educate themselves on the candidates running for office and on the issues important to Indian Country.
Tribes spend millions of dollars each year lobbying Congress to pass legislation that will impact tribal communities. As a tribal member, you can do your part by showing up on Election Day. The smaller elections and statewide elections decide what happens in our communities.
Use your voice, your vote to make a difference with important issues such as Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG), Tribal Sovereignty, Gaming, Criminal Justice Reform and Healthcare.
It’s also critical that we continue to support and elect Native Americans to public office on the local, state and national levels. You can do your part by campaigning, making donations and voting for tribal members running for office.
There are so many critical issues facing Indian Country, issues that don’t get nearly enough attention on the national stage. Voting alone won’t fix every complex social or policy problem, but it’s the first step in holding elected officials accountable for progress on these issues.
We, as Native Americans, must show our strength through unity. If we vote, we can elect representatives who support the causes important to the tribes.
There’s much work to be done and the easiest way to affect change is to VOTE! See you at the polls on June 30th. For information on Native candidates, how to register to vote and issues important to tribal communities, contact Native American Action on Facebook.