The Native vote turned out ... so today it's celebration
Patience was rewarded. Across the country people were on keyboards, social media, and posting that moment when the television networks called this election and began using the title of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris.
Rep. Deb Haaland, Laguna Pueblo and a Democrat from New Mexico, tweeted that the future is “looking bright. President-elect Joe Biden & Vice President-elect Kamila Harris will be strong leaders as we address the public health crisis, combat climate change, & build back better than before.”
However, Rep. Markwayne Mullin, Cherokee Nation, and a Republican from Oklahoma said: “Voters decide who wins the election, not the media. I fully support President Trump as he continues to fight for every legal vote to be counted.”
Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez said the people have spoken.
“The First Americans of this country, including a large majority of Navajo voters, had a major impact in the outcome of the presidential election in several swing states – that needs to be recognized and acknowledged by all,” he said. “Both campaigns fought hard for Native American votes, particularly Navajo votes, and that’s truly a reflection of the growing influence and power of tribal nations across the country.”
Nez said in a news release that he met with Biden and Harris to talk about the tribal nations plan. “The Navajo Nation now looks forward to working together with the Biden-Harris Administration to put that plan into action,” he said.
— Joe Biden wins; will be 46th president
— Kamala Harris becomes first Black woman, South Asian elected VP
— Biden-Harris campaign announces tribal nations plan
— Kamala Harris’ record in Indian Country dates 10 years
Gila River Indian Community Gov. Stephen Roe Lewis also said that the Native American vote played a key role in the outcome and the community now expected to be “treated with respect.”
From Oklahoma, Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. said the Cherokee Nation's "hand of friendship remains extended and our resolve that the U.S. honor its promises to #IndianCountry remains firm"
In Washington, State. Rep. Debra Lekanoff, Tlingit, posted about the moment she heard the news.
"I was in middle of my morning run with Cedar, the wonder dog, when my daughter sent me the text that I knew would change the lives of all Americans. We are all celebrating with hope, faith, and happiness. It is time for our Nation to heal, deconstruct racism, end hatred, and dissolve the darkness," she wrote in her weekly newsletter. "Together we will rebuild who we are as Americans, and that in this new era, united we stand."
Rep. Sharice Davids, Ho Chunk, and a Democrat from Kansas, tweeted that she is looking forward to the president-elect moving the country forward.
“As President-Elect Biden has said so many times, he will be a president for all Americans – not just those who voted for him," said Sen. Tom Udall, a Democrat from New Mexico. "It will take mutual respect and cooperation to solve the pressing challenges that we are facing: the devastation this virus has caused our health and economy, and the crises facing our democracy, our climate, and the natural world. We are going to need to heal our divisions as we work to build this country back better to create a more equitable, more prosperous, and healthier future. "