The Cherokee Nation intends to appoint a delegate to the House of Representatives, the tribal nation announced Thursday. The Oklahoma-based tribe is the largest of the three federally recognized Cherokee tribes in the country.
About a week ago, Chuck Hoskin Jr. was appointed as principal chief of the tribe. In a op-ed for the Tulsa World, Hoskin pointed to the tribe’s right to a congressional delegate is “guaranteed in multiple federal treaties” and in the Cherokee Nation’s constitution.
“The Cherokee Nation is today in a position of strength that I think is unprecedented in its history,” Hoskin told CNN.
It’s unclear if the delegate would have voting privileges or be similar the D.C. representative or other representatives of U.S. territories. “I think we have to look at the roadmaps that are laid out as a suggested path to seating our delegate, and certainly the delegates afforded the territories give us an idea of what is workable in the Congress,” Hoskin told CNN.
Kim TeeHee was announced as the delegate, but first she must be confirmed by the tribal council. She’s the vice president of government relations for the tribe. There will be a meeting on Aug. 29, CNN reported.
TeeHee said in a statement that she was “truly humbled” to working in service of the Cherokee Nation. “I remain supportive of his vision for the future of our tribal government and grateful for the opportunity to serve the great Cherokee Nation. This journey is just beginning and we have a long way to go to see this through to fruition,” Teehee said on Thursday. “However, a Cherokee Nation delegate to Congress is a negotiated right that our ancestors advocated for, and today, our tribal nation is stronger than ever and ready to defend all our constitutional and treaty rights. It’s just as important in 2019 as it was in our three treaties.”