The Standing Rock Sioux chairman on Thursday refuted Sean Spicer’s claim that Donald Trump has been in contact with the tribe regarding the Dakota Access Pipeline, calling the White House press secretary’s assertion “absolutely false.”
Spicer made the claim Wednesday at the White House daily press briefing, hours before militarized police removed the last Standing Rock protestor from camp, after a reporter asked why Trump hasn’t “intervened and tried to initiate” negotiations between” Standing Rock Sioux and Energy Transfer Partners, the company spearheading the project.
“Our team has been involved with both the tribe and the governor there, and so we are not only—we are constantly in touch with them,” Spicer asserted, adding that the Trump administration is confident they will “move forward” with the Dakota Access Pipeline.
In a statement to Indian Country Media Network, Standing Rock Sioux Chairman David Archambault II said Spicer’s statement is simply untrue.
“Spicer claimed that the Trump administration has been ‘constantly’ in contact with our Tribe. That claim is absolutely false,” Archambault II said. “We repeatedly asked for meetings with the Trump administration, but never received one until the day they notified Congress that they were issuing the easement.”
“I was on a plane to Washington, D.C. when I learned the easement was issued,” he continued. “It was an insult to me and to the Tribe. I canceled the meeting upon hearing this news. We have since filed a lawsuit for the immoral and illegal issuance of the easement and suspension of the environmental impact study.”
In December 2016, the Obama Administration instructed the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to deny an easement to Energy Transfer Partners, effectively halting the construction of the pipeline, which the Sioux tribe says threatens the upper Missouri River—the reservation’s main source of water.
The victory for the Sioux tribe was short lived, however. In an executive order signed just days after his inauguration, Trump advanced approval of the Dakota Access pipeline and Keystone XL. Water protectors were told to leave by Feb. 22 or face arrest at the camp. While more than 100 protestors left the camp without resistance, several water protectors stayed behind, facing arrest by a militarized police force.
Despite being forced out of the camp, the Sioux tribe remains committed to fighting against the DAPL, insisting the pipeline “is a dangerous project that threatens our water.”
“The tactics to divide our fight against the real enemy, Energy Transfer Partners, are counterproductive and detract from the goal to stop the denigration of our sovereign rights to protect our treaty resources,” Archambault II said.
Trump supporter arrested for child abuse after striking 12-year-old girl with a flagpole: report
A Florida man was arrested this week after he was caught on video assaulting a 12-year-old girl with a flag pole, the Florida Times-Union reports.
Norbert Eugene Logsdon Jr. was charged Wednesday with abuse of a child without great bodily harm. He was subsequently released in bail.
The incident was captured on video by the child's mother and was posted to Facebook. She and her daughter were driving past a sidewalk pro-Trump demonstration when the mother yelled something antagonistic to the Trump supporters. That's when Logsdon shoved the flagpole through the open right-front passenger window.
Medical expert doubts Trump’s claim every American will have a COVID vaccine by April: ‘I don’t see how that’s possible’
Speaking on CNN this Friday, professor of tropical medicine, Dr. Peter Hotez, pushed back on President Trump's claim that every American will have access to a coronavirus vaccine by April.
According to Hotez, there's "just too many unknowns right now" for Trump or any other administration official "to make such a statement.
Even if the vaccines currently in development work, "we don't have the details on the distribution," he added.
"There's going to be a lot of unknown questions," he continued. "We have to really take it in stages."
Watch the video below:
‘That is not true’: MSNBC cuts away from Trump’s press briefing after he claims Biden is anti-vaccine
During a press briefing at the White House this Friday, President Trump touted the coronavirus vaccine currently in development, preemptively calling it “successful” and saying that it will save “millions of lives.”
While making his comments, Trump took a dig at Joe Biden, claiming he espouses "anti-vaccine theories" and he's "putting a lot of lives at risk" for "political reasons."
Trump's words prompted MSNBC's Ayman Mohyeldin to cut away from the briefing and issue a fact check.
"Obviously there's no evidence of that -- that is not true," Mohyeldin said.
Watch the video below: