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Elizabeth Warren dealt out of tribe’s casino scene

Elizabeth Warren dealt out of tribe’s casino scene

Postby smix » Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:45 pm

Elizabeth Warren dealt out of tribe’s casino scene
Boston Herald

URL; https://www.bostonherald.com/2019/04/05 ... ino-scene/
Category: Politics
Published: April 5, 2019

Description: Mashpee Restoration Act co-sponsor is AWOL
Massachusetts, we are all “American Indians” now. On Wednesday, the House Subcommittee for Indigenous Peoples met to debate the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribal Reservation Restoration Act, an attempt by Massachusetts Democrats to rescue the Cape Cod tribe’s troubled casino deal. Their congressman — and the bill’s lead sponsor — Rep. Bill Keating was on hand as expected. Their former congressman, Democrat Bill Delahunt showed up, too, as did another former congressman, Republican Richard Pombo. (More about them in a moment.) But who didn’t show up? Who didn’t offer to testify, or send a letter, or even release a statement or post a tweet? The Mashpee tribe’s former BFF (“Before we Found out she’s a Fake”) Sen. Elizabeth Warren. One year ago, Warren was a Senate co-sponsor of the Mashpee Restoration Act. She was ready to fight for the tribe and its casino. Just last April she visited the tribal offices to show her support.

warren-nevertheless-she-persisted.jpg

Today? She’s gone. In the wind. Nowhere to be found. Why? Because the Mashpees don’t want her around. “She’s been waved off,” a gaming industry source told me. “Everyone knows it’s her bill, but they [the Mashpees] don’t want her anywhere near it.” And why would they? If you’re a proud Mashpee Wampanoag who treasures your Native American heritage, Warren’s an embarrassment. And if you’re just an opportunist hoping to make a few bucks off an Indian casino — she’s even worse. I’m not blaming Warren for the Mashpee’s current mess. The problem has always been that federal law says a tribe must have been federally recognized by 1934 in order for the feds to create new tribal lands where they can, among other things, build a casino. The Mashpees weren’t federally recognized until 2007. And that only happened because of the money they poured on notoriously corrupt D.C. lobbyist Jack Abramoff. And who was Abramoff’s go-to guy in Congress at the time? The aforementioned Rep. Pombo who, you’ll be stunned to learn, is now a lobbyist himself. Care to guess who he works for? Why, the Mashpees! Well, technically Genting Malaysia — the big multinational gaming company pushing their casino bill. And who else got money from the Mashpees after he left Congress? Our own Bill Delahunt. All in all, it’s exactly the level of low-grade shady one would expect from a Massachusetts-based, Democrat-backed casino project. “This bill contradicts a Supreme Court decision and aims to reverse federal court decisions, in order to build a massive 400,000 square-foot off-reservation gaming complex for the benefit of Genting Malaysia,” Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) said during Wednesday’s hearing. “Is this a bill for the Mashpees, or is it actually a financial bailout for Genting?” Gosar asked. A better question might be why Warren — or anyone else for that matter — would want to have anything to do with this project? Trish Keliinui, spokesperson for the Mashpee tribe, declined to comment on reports that the tribe has asked Sen. Warren not to offer public support for the casino project or file any legislation on her behalf. But what other explanation is there for Warren’s transition from a proud co-sponsor to persona non grata? Here’s the problem — and not just for the Mashpees but for all of us: Warren’s self-inflicted wounds from her fake identity politics combined with her fading 2020 fortunes now leave Massachusetts with the least effective and most embarrassing member of the U.S. Senate. Ask yourself: Who has less juice in the U.S. Senate right now than Liz Warren? When Bernie Sanders speaks, for example, people pay attention. Even freshman Rep. Ocasio-Cortez can get things done, as she did when she helped kill the Democrats’ anti-semitism resolution for her pal Ilhan Omar. Could Warren get that done? Could she make an impact on a cause vital to Massachusetts voters? If you think the answer is “yes,” I’ve got a casino in Taunton to sell you…
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Where's Warren? Mashpee tribe renews casino push without Massachusetts Democrat

Postby smix » Sun Apr 07, 2019 10:12 pm

Where's Warren? Mashpee tribe renews casino push without Massachusetts Democrat
Washington Times

URL: https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/20 ... n-support/
Category: Politics
Published: April 4, 2019

Description: Mashpee Wampanoag bill would pave way for tribal gaming resort
A Massachusetts tribe seeking to build a $1 billion casino resort has renewed its push for a congressional boost, but this time without the conspicuous support of Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who may have done more to hurt the effort than help it. So far Ms. Warren, who led the fight in the last session, has not reintroduced Senate legislation to place land into federal trust on behalf of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, even as the House bill saw testimony Wednesday before a subcommittee. Ms. Warren has not commented publicly about whether she plans to reenter the fray, but throwing her support behind the bill last year wound up raising the political stakes by dragging the legislation into the hubbub over her presidential ambitions and disputed American Indian heritage. What’s more, President Trump is seen as unlikely to sign legislation championed by Ms. Warren as she blasts him daily on the campaign trail in her bid to capture the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, meaning her lower profile could be a strategic move. “They’ve finally made the political calculation that she’s killing them,” said an industry source who opposes the bill. Clyde Barrow, political science professor at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, said the Mashpee tribe’s chances in the 116th Congress would be slim, with or without Ms. Warren. He said Republicans, who control the Senate, have been historically cool to Indian gaming, while Mr. Trump has a record of “just absolutely opposing it vehemently since his days in the industry.” “The Senate’s not going to move anything they know the president’s not going to approve,” said Mr. Barrow, a gaming policy expert. “And as we go into the presidential election season, they’re also not going to be inclined to do favors for any of the opposition candidates like Warren who are running for president.” Ms. Warren and Sen. Edward Markey, both Massachusetts Democrats, introduced the 2018 bill after a federal judge barred the Interior Department from taking 321 acres of Mashpee land into trust for a reservation, a prerequisite for a tribal casino. By that time, the Genting Group, a Malaysian investor, had sunk an estimated $400 million into First Light Resort and Casino, a proposed $1 billion tribal gaming attraction in Taunton, Massachusetts, about 30 miles from the Twin River Casino Hotel in Lincoln, Rhode Island. At Wednesday’s hearing, Claire Richards, counsel to Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo, testified that the Mashpee bill would deal a blow to her state’s revenue base and encourage more bills aimed at leapfrogging the federal trust-acquisition process. Rep. William Keating, the Massachusetts Democrat who sponsored H.R. 312, countered that Rhode Island “has decided that protection of their casino revenue is more important than the long-term existence of the Mashpee Wampanoag tribe.” “The opposition to [H.R. 312] is grounded in the belief that Rhode Island’s decision to build near the Massachusetts state line should grant them territorial rights that extend over that border and into the commonwealth of Massachusetts,” Mr. Keating said. Also backing the bill was Rep. Ruben Gallego, chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee’s Indigenous Peoples subcommittee, who said the “legal limbo imposed by this decision has left the Mashpee on the brink of dissolution.” The subcommittee did not vote on the measure, fueling speculation that the bill may skip the committee process and move straight to the House floor. Rep. Paul Gosar, Arizona Republican, argued that the bill would thwart decisions by the Interior Department and the federal court, citing a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that only tribes recognized as of 1934 may have federal land taken into trust.

we-will-help-you-survive-the-winter.jpg

The Mashpee, known as the people who welcomed the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock, did not receive federal recognition until 2007. The tribe has about 2,600 members. “If H.R. 312 is passed, Congress will declare years of fighting and victories by local stakeholders as if they never happened,” said Mr. Gosar. “Congress will also take the view that current federal law should not apply to the Mashpee tribe.” The tribe has also come under recent scrutiny over its leadership. In January, chairman Cedric Cromwell was stripped of his financial authority over tribal affairs and gaming, followed by a no-confidence vote of the tribal council, but in February the panel rescinded the vote and reinstated his authority. Former Mashpee Chairman Glenn Marshall was convicted in 2009 of fraud and embezzling from the tribe while working with convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Asked if the legislation was a “bailout bill” for Genting, Mashpee Vice Chairwoman Jessie Little Doe Baird pointed to the expense of the legal battles involving tribal and reservation recognition. “[W]e are forced to enter into agreements and find funding to help us get through these processes,” said Ms. Baird. “And they’re very expensive. The federal acknowledgement process alone took 30 years and cost us millions of dollars as did the land-in-trust process.” Replied Mr. Gosar: “You’ll never get out from underneath that debt.”
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Warren’s Casino Bill to Get Hearing–but Where’s Liz?

Postby smix » Sun Apr 07, 2019 10:26 pm

Warren’s Casino Bill to Get Hearing–but Where’s Liz?
InsideSources

URL: https://www.insidesources.com/warrens-c ... heres-liz/
Category: Politics
Published: March 29, 2019

Description: After months of effort by Sen. Elizabeth Warren to bolster her Native American bona fides, a bill allowing the Massachusetts-based Mashpee Wampanoag Tribal Nation to circumvent current law and open their own casino is finally getting a vote. But activists are now asking: Where’s Warren? Last March, Senator Warren was a co-sponsor of the Senate version of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe Reservation Reaffirmation Act, which would overturn rulings by both the Department of the Interior and the federal courts to give the tribe land for a casino. This year, not only is Sen. Warren not sponsoring any legislation but her office is a firm “no comment” on the legislation entirely. The bill is scheduled to be heard by the Indigenous People’s subcommittee of the House Natural Resources Committee on Wednesday, April, 3. But Warren has yet to endorse or support it publicly since the new Congress began. “She’s been waved off,” an industry source tells InsideSources. “Everyone knows it’s her bill, but they [the Mashpees] don’t want her anywhere near it.”

warren-native.jpg

Warren’s silence is part of an overall strategy by the new Democratic leadership of the House to slip the legislation through Congress with as little transparency as possible. Reported plans to bypass the committee process and bring it to the House floor for a vote were upended when opponents of the effort began bringing attention to it. Will House Republicans raise questions about this casino plan–including the involvement of the scandal-plagued gaming company Genting Malaysia — or will they help Warren repair her troubled relationship with Native Americans by supporting the legislation? “She may be silent now,” the industry source told NHJournal, “but Warren’s 2020 campaign team will be celebrating if they can get this win.” Rhode Island lawmakers, including her fellow Democrats, will not. “This bill is bad for Rhode Island. I have strongly communicated to my colleagues my State’s concerns and opposition to this bill,” Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) tells InsideSources. Warren’s work on behalf of the controversial Mashpee casino project is widely seen as part of her efforts to mend fences with the Native Amerian community in the wake of her unsubstantiated claims of Native status in multiple official documents. So far the results have been mixed. In the months since she co-sponsored the Mashpee bill, Warren has suffered the poorly-received release of her DNA test showing minimal genetic evidence of Native American heritage; and the unearthing of a copy of Warren’s 1986 Texas Bar registration card with “American Indian” listed as her race in her own handwriting. “If she wants to be considered the leader of our party or the leader of the progressive movement, she needs a reconciliation,” Jennifer Epps-Addison of the Center for Popular Democracy said in the wake of Warren’s dubious DNA test. “And that reconciliation should center on Native voices…not one white woman’s tale of understanding her DNA.”

warren-texas-bar-registration-card.jpg

When the Texas Bar registration card was published, Aimee Allison of the progressive group She the People said, “To claim native identity — clearly it wasn’t the appropriate thing to do. Was she trying to indicate her solidarity with the group? Why was it like that for her in the 1980s? I think she has more to say on that.” She the People’s mission is to help elect women of color.
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Federally Recognized Tribe in Massachusetts Wants Fauxcahontas Far Away from Their Casino Bid

Postby smix » Wed Jun 26, 2019 1:07 am

Federally Recognized Tribe in Massachusetts Wants Fauxcahontas Far Away from Their Casino Bid
Breitbart News

URL: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2019 ... -away-bid/
Category: Politics
Published: June 25, 2019

Description: A small federally recognized tribe in Massachusetts apparently wants Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) far away from legislation that will help them open a casino in the Bay State. As Breitbart News has reported extensively, Warren has made false claims of Native American ancestry since 1984. To date, Warren has produced no documentary evidence to support her claim. Her 2020 presidential campaign, which has recently been picking up steam, almost failed to launch after the debacle created in October when she issued a press release and video purporting that genetic evidence supported her claim. However, her announcement that she had taken a DNA test which showed that she has between 0.1 percent and 1.6 percent DNA in common with residents of Peru, Mexico, and Colombia was almost universally derided by Native American tribes as an insulting claim lacking credibility. Earlier this month, H.R. 312, the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe Reservation Reaffirmation Act, a bill that “reaffirms the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe reservation as trust land in Massachusetts” passed the House by a margin of 275 to 146, with 228 Democrats voting yes and only two voting no. Forty seven Republicans voted yes, while 144 voted no. If the bill passes the Senate and is signed by the president, it will enable the tribe to construct a casino in Taunton to be called First Light Resort & Casino, according to the tribe’s website. The 2,600 member Cape Cod, Massachusetts-based Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, which gained federal recognition in 2007, acquired the rights to the land intended for the casino in Taunton, which is not located on Cape Cod where the tribe is historically based, in 2009, with the help of an estimated $400 million from a Malaysian company. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) was an early sponsor of the bill. But you won’t see her name listed among the sponsors when the bill comes to the floor of the Senate, in part because her own debunked claims of Native American ancestry could draw unwanted attention to some questions about the historical authenticity of claims made by the tribe surrounding the reasons for converting the acquired land in Taunton to a land trust. “One year ago, Warren was a Senate co-sponsor of the Mashpee Restoration Act. She was ready to fight for the tribe and its casino. Just last April she visited the tribal offices to show her support,” Boston Herald columnist Michael Graham wrote back in April. Graham continued:
Today? She’s gone. In the wind. Nowhere to be found. Why? Because the Mashpees don’t want her around. “She’s been waved off,” a gaming industry source told me. “Everyone knows it’s her bill, but they [the Mashpees] don’t want her anywhere near it.” And why would they? If you’re a proud Mashpee Wampanoag who treasures your Native American heritage, Warren’s an embarrassment. And if you’re just an opportunist hoping to make a few bucks off an Indian casino — she’s even worse.

“The problem has always been that federal law says a tribe must have been federally recognized by 1934 in order for the feds to create new tribal lands where they can, among other things, build a casino. The Mashpees weren’t federally recognized until 2007. And that only happened because of the money they poured on notoriously corrupt D.C. lobbyist Jack Abramoff,” Graham continued. The path to federal recognition for the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe was controversial. Glenn Marshall, the former head of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribal Council for many years, was indicted and convicted on several charges just months after the Tribe received federal recognition in 2007. His successor, Cedric Cromwell, unlike Elizabeth Warren, has documentary evidence that shows his own Native American Ancestry–the 1860 census showed that his great-great-great grandfather, Joseph Tobey Sr. is listed as “Indian.” But the specifics of the tribe’s land trust claim are in dispute, despite the House vote that moved the bill to the Senate. The tribe’s historical connections to Taunton, Massachusetts, were questioned in this 2013 Cape Cod Times article. According to the Times:
Reaction to the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe’s claims of significant historic ties to Taunton was swift and in some cases predictable. “Put your full waders on. It’s starting to get deep,” Middleboro Selectman Allin Frawley, a casino opponent, posted on his Facebook wall linking to a Sunday Cape Cod Times story reporting the claims. The Times obtained copies of two widely anticipated reports contained within the tribe’s application to have 146 acres in Taunton and 170 acres in Mashpee taken into trust by the Department of the Interior. One report claims historic and modern ties to Cohannut, which encompasses modern-day Taunton, as part of the larger Pokanoket tribe. The other, prepared by tribe lawyers, attempts to demonstrate the Mashpee tribe was always under federal jurisdiction so a 2009 U.S. Supreme Court ruling, known as the Carcieri decision, would not prevent the tribe from getting land.

And, as the Boston Globe reported in 2012, other tribes also dispute the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe’s historical connection to Taunton. According to the Globe:
The first step in placing the Mashpee Wampanoag’s target casino site in Taunton into federal trust – a requirement for tribal gaming to move forward there – was taken Wednesday, with the US Bureau of Indian Affairs gathering public concerns over possible environmental effects of the project. About 200 people turned out for the hearing, most ­opposed to building a casino resort in the East Taunton industrial park. A half-dozen representatives from a string of Pokanoket tribes, standing together at the microphone, questioned the Mashpee tribe’s right to the Taunton land, arguing that the Mashpee have no historic ties there. Billy Guy, sagamore of the Pokanoket, outlined his tribe’s 400-year history in Southeastern Massachusetts. “The Mashpee were never part of this area,” he said. “I don’t know why the Bureau of Indian Affairs is backing them. You need to check the history and do the right thing.”

President Trump has wasted no time in “blasting Elizabeth Warren over the Mashpee Wampanoag land bill,” as the Boston Herald reported last month.
“Republicans shouldn’t vote for H.R. 312, a special interest casino Bill, backed by Elizabeth (Pocahontas) Warren. It is unfair and doesn’t treat Native Americans equally!” Trump wrote. The bill would reaffirm the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe reservation as trust land in Massachusetts. It comes after the Trump administration last year overturned a ruling allowing for the trust, which put a $1 billion casino project in jeopardy. Warren, who has faced criticism for her Native American ancestry claims, slammed Trump at the time, saying his administration was “reneging” on “yet another deal” with Native Americans. But she is not listed as a co-sponsor of the current bill. Her presidential campaign and Senate teams did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday.

As Sen. Warren continues to rise in the polls, her role in the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe Reservation Reaffirmation Act as it makes it way through the Senate will almost certainly continue to draw attention from President Trump.
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