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Catawba Indian Nation, South Carolina

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A second, two-day round of balloting for a proposed constitution for the Catawba Indian Nation came up short July 28 as 27 tribal members cast ballots. The votes, when added to 293 cast in May, still are short of the minimum of 430 needed to approve the constitution. The vote requires approval from 30 percent of the tribe's 2,107 members. "I was hoping for a higher count so we can decide which way to go,'' said Assistant Chief Buck George. "It's very disappointing.'' A 1993 lawsuit settlement ended a 153-year-old land dispute and granted the tribe $50 million. The settlement requires the nation to adopt a new constitution. The members have not held full elections since 1975. George said he expects at least one more round of balloting. He did not know when that might happen.

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