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Cherokee Freedmen Voting in Special Election

Filed by Michael Cross in Feature, Local News, News.
September 26, 2011

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The Cherokee Nation is moving forward with elections and holding the vote open until October 8thso about 1,200 freedmen can vote.

The Descendants of Freedmen Association says it’s pleased with the decision by a federal judge to allow voting by its members, but it didn’t go far enough.

President Marilynn Vann says the judge’s decision does not require the tribe to immediately process more freedmen applications.

“For instance I have a daughter who they have not sent out her tribal registration card. I know she would have loved to have voted this weekend.”

Vann says it’s possible that the admission of the freemen to vote could have an impact on the reelection of Chief Chad Smith who supported the removal of the descendants of slaves.

The original election this summer between Smith and challenger Bill John Baker was considered too close to call which prompted the special election.

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