The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that an Indian tribe cannot be prosecuted by the state of Michigan for opening what local authorities deemed to be an illegal casino.
The top U.S. court affirmed the “sovereign immunity” of the Bay Mills tribe in the 5-4 decision, with the majority maintaining it was up to the Congress, and not the courts, to decide the limits of that immunity.
“Congress has not abrogated tribal sovereign immunity from a state’s suit to enjoin gaming off a reservation or other Indian lands.
“Indian tribes have immunity even when a suit arises from off-reservation commercial activity,” it said.
The case before the nine justices involved a suit brought by the state of Michigan against the Bay Mills tribe which installed a casino in the town of Vanderbilt, about 12 miles (20 kilometers) from its reservation.
The tribe initially built a small casino with 38 slot machines, and then expanded it to 84 slot machines.
Michigan argued that the land on which the casino was built was not Indian lands — something the tribe disputed– and that therefore it was operating a casino in violation of federal law.
A 1998 law authorizes native American tribes under certain conditions to run slot machines and other gambling operations in their reservations, even when it is illegal on the national level.
During the arguments over the case, the lawyer for the state of Michigan, John Bursch, asked why a native American tribe would have immunity in operating an illegal casino, when a sovereign country like France would have to respond to the courts.
[Image via Agence France-Presse]
Republican analyst says Trump is ‘threatened by’ being challenged by women: ‘It hurts his ego’
According to one Republican commentator, President Donald Trump's decision to lash out at four Congresswomen of color stems from his inability to handle being challenged by women.
In a segment with MSNBC host Ali Velshi, Rina Shah, who runs Republican Women for Progress, said that she's been the target of racist attacks from Trump supporters ever since she announced she wouldn't support him.
"I believe that what this president is doing is fanning the flames," she said. "He cannot denounce white supremacy, white nationalism. This is a moment in which he could have kept his mouth shut. You know, this tit-for-tat with [Speaker Nancy] Pelosi (D-CA) and 'The Squad,' he didn’t need to engage in it. If I was advising the president, if I were one of his advisers, I would have said stay out of it. But he doesn't listen to anyone around him."
Mitt Romney blames democratic women for Trump’s racism: Their views ‘are not consistent with my experience’
Little more than six months ago Senator-elect Mitt Romney (R-UT) promised voters he would "speak out" against President Donald Trump's racism. On Monday, Senator Mitt Romney blamed the targets of President Donald Trump's two-day racism fest for the President's own racism.
"I will speak out against significant statements or actions," by President Trump, "that are divisive, racist, sexist, anti-immigrant, dishonest or destructive to democratic institutions," Romney said in a New Year's Day 2019 Washington Post op-ed.
Facebook needs ‘very high standard’ for Libra coin: Mnuchin
Facebook will need to meet "a very high standard" before it moves ahead with its planned digital currency Libra, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Monday.
Mnuchin said US regulators have already expressed concerns to Facebook about the plan for a global cryptocurrency, noting that these kinds of virtual coins have in the past been associated with money laundering and illicit activities.
"Whether they're banks or non-banks, they're under the same regulatory environment," Mnuchin told reporters at the White House, adding that Facebook "will have to have a very high standard before they have access to the financial system."