In 1835, the U.S. government and the Cherokee Nation signed the Treaty of New Echota, the legal basis to force the Cherokee people to give up their ancestral homelands and move west. In return, the tribe was supposed to get a voice in Congress.
In the following years, thousands of people would die as a result of the forced displacement and ethnic cleansing that today is known as the “Trail of Tears.” And nearly two centuries later, Congress has yet to take the formal action necessary to establish the designated seat.
After waiting 188 years, the Cherokee Nation should get their promised seat in Congress.
If approved by the House of Representatives, the Delegate could sit on committees, request meetings with Cabinet officials, and push for new policy proposals. These powers can be crucial, and the Cherokee Nation deserves a seat at the table. Today, tribal leaders are STILL pushing Congress to make good on this promise. But for it to happen, a majority of the House needs to be on board — and that’s where you come in.