First Presidential Candidates Forum Focused on Indigenous Issues Aug. 19-20

Nine Democratic presidential hopefuls will participate in the first ever presidential forum focused entirely on indigenous issues. It will be held Monday and Tuesday, Aug. 19 and 20, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Sioux City Iowa.

The Native American Rights Fund is co-hosting the event and will live stream it here. If you want to see this historic event in person, Sioux City is about a four-and-a-half hour drive from the Twin Cities and tickets are only $3. One of those presenting will be Healing Minnesota Stories friend Mark Charles (Navajo/Dutch) who is an announced candidate for president.

This will not be debate style forum. Each candidate will get roughly an hour to speak to the audience. Here is the line-up.

Monday, Aug. 19:

9 am – Marianne Williamson
10 am Elizabeth Warren
1 pm – Special Presentation
2 pm – Amy Klobuchar
3 pm – Steve Bullock

Tuesday, Aug 20:

11 a.m. – Mark Charles
1 pm – John Delaney
3 pm – Julian Castro
5 pm – Bernie Sanders
6 pm – Bill de Blasio

I am curious about whether any of the candidates, particularly Klobuchar, bring up the issue of Enbridge Line 3 and the treaty issues it raises.

According to event publicity:

As a nonpartisan event, all major Democratic and Republican presidential candidates have been invited to participate in the forum, including President Donald Trump and Republican challenger William Weld. …

“This forum isn’t about ‘gotcha’ moments. It’s about ‘get it’ moments. We want candidates to grasp the challenges and aspirations of Indian Country. At the two nights of candidate debates in Miami, broadcast to a national audience, not one question or one candidate comment addressed Native American issues. Ignoring this forum in Iowa is ignoring the millions of First Americans who are citizens and voters.” said O.J. Semans, Sr., co-executive director of the national Native American voting rights organization Four Directions.

The Frank LaMere Native American Presidential Forum is named in honor of Frank LaMere, a well-known and beloved Native American civil rights activist from the Sioux City area, who passed in June.


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