Home / General / The History of Native American Voting

The History of Native American Voting


This is a great overview of attempts to suppress the Native American vote after they received full citizenship rights in 1924. In short, they were treated by western states not too different from African-Americans in the Jim Crow South.

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  • DrDick

    Montana did not allow Indians on the reservations to vote until 1964. Prior to that they used the fact that the reservations were not legally part of the state of Montana to bar them.

    • DrDick

      I misremembered the date. It was actually 1965, as a consequence of the Voting Rights Act.

  • Bill Murray

    I’m still surprised the Republicans did not raise more of fuss when Johnson beat Thune by 532 votes in South Dakota in 2002. Not that they didn’t raise a fuss, but not a huge one

  • ChrisTS

    I know this is OT re the OP, but I am surprised that my [not brilliant] comment did not get some feedback. I wrote:

    ChrisTS says:

    June 23, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    I don’t give a damn whether Kanye West is talented or not. Would we quibble over the talent of someone whose lyrics were loaded with violent racist remarks? It’s time for musicians to lose the free pass on misogyny.

    Is this really not worthy of response?

    • In a comment thread about Native American voter suppression, no.

      • ChrisTS

        Many apologies.

      • Anonymous

        Perhaps Mr. Loomis could start a thread where this could be explored.

    • Anthony

      Clearly everyone was just stunned to silence by your air tight logic.

      • Manju

        …and thus had no choice but to go out and get some air supply.

        • Bill Murray

          sadly, we were all out of love

  • That’s a really interesting piece, thanks for bringing it to my attention. It’s something Iknew little about.

  • JamesP

    Great piece, thanks. Reminded me that shamefully, Australia didn’t grant equal voting rights to Aboriginals until the 1960s.

  • Thanks for the link.

    I assume that the lack pancakes everywhere indicates iTrolls suffered a massive extinction event over the weekend.

    • Maybe climate change has an unexpected benefit?

  • witless chum

    Good old Bill Janklow. Every time I learn something new about him, it makes him out to be a bigger piece of shit. In this case, after he finished his probation for killing a motorcyclist, he received at least four other speeding tickets before brain cancer removed him from roads in 2012.

    Seems like burning the Indian-hating bastard in effigy at every South Dakota Democratic Party convention would be a.) just and b.) might be good politics.

    I looked up Michigan on this site:

    Apparently, various tribes make up 1.3 percent of eligible voters in the states.

    • The Party Girl

      and they didn’t even bring up Jacinta Eagle Deer

      • witless chum

        Or if you want to be a little tinfoil, her and her mom’s unsolved death in a hit-and-run car accident and unsolved murder, respectfully.

    • In the pantheon of racist states, South Dakota is way underrated.

      • The Party Girl

        on the other hand how many other states changed Columbus Day to Native American Day? On Zaphod Beeblebrox’s third hand, until the 1970s if three Lakota crossed the Missouri, you could declare them a war party and shoot them, or say I have heard

        • HP

          One of my earliest memories is a family camping trip in the Wisconsin northwoods in 1968, when I was 4 or 5 years old. Dad got lost trying to find the campgrounds, and we accidentally drove onto the Menominee reservation. This was during Menominee Tribe v. United States, and the two nations were in the midst of what amounted to an undeclared war.

          The tribe actually had young women stationed on all the back roads, apparently just to deal with clueless vacationers like Dad. She waved us down, and he was sternly yet politely instructed to turn around, and given driving directions back to our campground that would not take us across Indian land.

  • Ronan

    Somewhat relatedly, and following on a little from the mention of Cities of Salt recently, Robert Vitalis’ book Americas Kingdom is really interesting on how the oil camps in Saudi Arabia were influenced by Jim Crow, and run under a system very similar

    • Ronan

      It’s not that related I guess, just got me thinking about it really

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