United States Commission on Civil Rights

Confidential Draft Report
“Enforcement of the Indian Civil Rights Act of 1968”

May 1990

Indian Civil Rights, page 42
     The Bureau's decision not to include ICRA language in the tribal court contract is memorialized in a memorandum dated December 23, 1987:

Based on my staff's recommendations I will decline, at this time, from attempting to insert any draft language to the Public Law 93-638 Tribal Court Contract with the Red Lake Chippewa Tribe as proposed by your Twin Cities field office. [88]

In an exchange with Commission Deputy General Counsel Brian D. Miller and General Counsel William J. Howard, Secretary Swimmer explained that he believed that inclusion of ICRA language in the Red Lake contract was unnecessary since the contract already required compliance with all federal laws:

MR. MILLER: In that contract there was no reference to the Indian Civil Rights Act; is that correct?
MR. SWIMMER:  That is correct.  Indirectly, of course, there is, and that is that the tribe must comply with all Federal statutes.  I did not feel personally that it was necessary to point that out to a tribal chairman, either there or anyplace else.  And I believe that tribal chairman, as well as many others, knows that he has to follow Federal

[88]  U.S. Department of the Interior Memorandum From Hazel E. Elbert, Acting Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs to Acting Associate Solicitor, Division of Indian Affairs (December 23, 1987), reprinted as Exhibit 3, Portland Hearing, supra note 25, at 123.

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