Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) today commemorated 50 years since the federal policy of Indian self-determination was first put forward and led to eventual passage in Congress of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act of 1975. Cole is a member of the Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma and co-chair of the Congressional Native American Caucus.
"Fifty years ago, President Richard Nixon sparked a policy movement that ultimately led to the passage of monumental legislation in Congress, changing the course of the federal government's relationship with tribal nations for the better. Those bold efforts to reassert, recognize and celebrate tribal sovereignty and self-determination have indeed made America stronger.
"Building on the progress started five decades ago, I am encouraged that efforts are still being made to improve the lives, safety and well-being of Native Americans. While there is still work to do, I am proud that President Donald Trump not only recognizes and respects the constitutional rights of tribal nations, but he is actively helping empower, assist and preserve Indian Country. When Indian Country thrives, America thrives."
Earlier today, President Donald Trump issued a proclamation recognizing this hallmark year for the federal policy of Indian self-determination. Text of the proclamation is available here.