Updates

21-obama_s

With all of the excitement about the upcoming blowout/inauguration in D.C. next month, we thought we’d share with you some of our thoughts on the Change that is coming to D.C.

New Secretary of the Interior – Ken Salazar

82367461PR027_2008_DemocratPresident-elect Obama has named Colorado Senator Ken Salazar to run the nation’s Interior Department which of course means that he will be in charge of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.  And Salazar will have a huge say in who gets to be Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs, so if you want that job (and who doesn’t?) start rooting around for those Colorado connections – they’ll come in handy with Salazar.  Although Salazar has two Ute (uh, not the Joe Pesci kind) tribes in his state, he has been very low key on Indian issues.   We’ll have to see how he likes the sound of “Cobell versus Salazar”.

New Secretary of Commerce – Bill Richardson

richardsonNew Mexico Governor Bill Richardson is an old hand around Indian Country and is known for his ability to push through bills for Indian tribes over tough opposition — the 1994 Peyote bill comes to mind — as well as push the federal and state goverments to do right by tribes.  In 2000 he directed the Energy Department to return 84,000 of federal land back to the Ute Tribe, made every single senior Energy Department official take an “Indian 101” class taught by LaDonna and Laura Harris, and ordered the first and sadly, only study of Indian energy needs and resources before the Bush Administration took the Department over.  Richardson will have a lot of say so on key issues affecting tribes like the massive Public Works bill Obama wants Congress to approve, as well as a  new initiative to bring real broadband access to all of Indian Country.

Secretary of Health and Human Services – Tom Daschle

tom20daschle20twnFormer South Dakota Senator and Majority Leader and Minority Leader Tom Daschle is another old ally and staunch defender of Native American interests.  Daschle is probably the main reason that Obama took such a strong interest and solid position on Indian issues.  After all, Daschle served as a mentor to Obama and basically handed Obama his legislative and campaign staff.  So it is no wonder that Obama has given Daschle the plum role of overseeing national health care reform.  Indian Country and Urban Indians alike suffer from terrible health care, so we are grateful that it will be Daschle leading the charge on health care reform.  Can we also do something about the vending machines at the IHS clinics.  They ALWAYS take our dollar bills!

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2 Responses to “Updates”

  1. vending machines are great pieces of technology that we enjoy today, they are made for the purpose of giving us convenience .

  2. *-” that seems to be a great topic, i really love it ~*~

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