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U.S. Presidential Transition (2009)
Indian tribes, with more clout and money, find an ally in Obama
Indian tribes, with more clout and money, find an ally in Obama

WASHINGTON — At a July fundraiser in the elegant Mandarin Oriental hotel near Washington's Tidal Basin, President Obama met with some of his most steadfast supporters — two dozen political and business leaders eager to write sizable checks to help keep him in the White House. All were leaders of Native American tribes, who pressed their issues with a president they say is attuned to their needs. Bill John Baker, principal chief of the Cherokee Nation, told Obama his Oklahoma tribe was owed $50 million for its costs of administering federal health services. "He said, 'Let me look into this and see what we can do,'" Baker recalled. A week later, he...

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