Western Native Voice
Despite the best efforts of Western Native Voice, the House State Administration committee and other advocacy groups, House Bill 613 failed to pass third reading in the house.
On Wednesday afternoon, HB 613 Native American Rights Act failed by a vote of 48 to 51. House Bill 613 was designed to create equal and fair access to the ballot box and remove voting barriers for Native Americans living in rural areas across Montana.
“The Governor’s office and House Republicans had a chance to work alongside us in a bipartisan fashion to create fair and equal access to the ballot, but failed to do so,” said Keaton Sunchild, Western Native Voice Political Director.
“House Bill 613 received strong bipartisan support in committee and was great voting rights legislation that would have demonstrated a strong commitment to the value of one person, one vote. Although we are very disappointed that House 613 did not pass, Western Native Voice will continue the necessary work of protecting voting rights and making voting a tradition in tribal nations. We urge Native voters in Montana to remember this setback with House Bill 613 when it comes time to cast their ballot in the next election,” said Sunchild.
About Western Native Voice
Western Native Voice is a non-profit, non-partisan social justice organization working to inspire Native leadership through community organizing, education, leadership, and advocacy. With 7% of Montana’s population being Native American living almost evenly split between reservation and urban areas, Western Native Voice organizes in rural and urban communities using a culturally tailored community organizing and citizen education model to build Native leadership.