South Dakota governors likely violated families' civil rights

As GOP leaders warn of overreach in party scandal-baiting, heart-wrenching testimony continues in South Dakota's violations of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) in Rapid City. Live-stream proceedings here.

Pennington County's behavior has been called shocking. With state officials sitting in the audience and not on the dais, former US Senator James Abourezk urged the federal government to sue the State of South Dakota.

Daniel Simmons-Ritchie writes in the Rapid City Journal, itself a focus of racial controversy:
Between choked sobs and streaming tears, more than a dozen Native American families delivered testimony Wednesday in Rapid City about how their children were taken from them by South Dakota social workers.
Christina Rose, Native Sun News Associate Editor told readers at indianz:
According to Stephen Pevar, attorney for the ACLU, “What happened in the Pennington County Courts is something you would expect in a Third World Country.” Pevar has been an ACLU attorney for 36 years and said he has never seen such blatant violations in his career.
This interested party has direct knowledge of abuses visited upon families by employees of the state from 1994 to 2000 and is all too close to this story.

Kevin Washburn of Indian Affairs, within the US Department of the Interior, has announced that the agency is seeking a new director of the Bureau of Indian Education.
As part of the Obama Administration’s all-of-the-above strategy to support safe and responsible domestic energy production, the Department of the Interior today announced the release of an updated draft proposal that would establish commonsense safety standards for hydraulic fracturing on public and Indian lands. The supplemental proposal being released today revises the array of tools operators may use to show that water is being protected, and provides more guidance on trade secret disclosure, while providing additional flexibility for meeting these objectives. [press release, Department of Interior]
The ill-fated Keystone XL pipeline would cross the Cheyenne River just upstream of the already pollution-threatened Tituwan Lakota Oyate Wacipi.
“You’re not welcome here… We’ve said no from day one.” And with these firm words the TransCanada representatives were kicked out of Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation last week. [Tar Sands Blockade.]
A candidate for the Montana judiciary was targeted by mailers distributed by dark money registered under Section 501(c)(4) of the U.S. tax code.
Conservative nonprofits that received tax-exempt status since the beginning of 2010 and also filed election spending reports with the Federal Election Commission overwhelmed liberal groups in terms of money spent on politics, an analysis of Internal Revenue Service and FEC records shows. [Robert Maguire, Open Secrets.]
Janklow, Rounds, Daugaard: guilty!

Bill Janklow routinely eavesdropped on his political opponents electronically: protege Marty Jackley continues the practice today.

Freddie is a DREAMer: no man in America works harder than he does. The hearing to determine his citizenship status has been postponed until SCOTUS rules or until Lady Liberty pulls her torch out of her ass.

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