Boxer’s Indian casino ties.

Oddly, the original story about Senator Barbara Boxer (D, CA), Boxer’s son, a regenerated Native American tribe, and a rapidly-looming San Franciscan casino seems to have disappeared from The Hill’s site, but a copy can be found here. It’s fascinating reading.

The short version: back in the 1990s, Rep Lynn Woolsey introduced legislation that would reinstate an officially defunct Native American tribe (the Miwoks), with the explicit restriction that said tribe would not be permitted to build a casino (which is a standard revenue generator for Native American tribes, thanks to various federal regulations and exemptions).  When the bill came over to the Senate’s side, however, Senator Barbara Boxer changed the legislation to both remove that restriction and to make the land owned by the Miwoks a reservation.  This was supposedly done without the knowledge of either Rep. Woolsey, or Senator Dianne Feinstein.

Then – shock and surprise! – the Miwoks decided that they wanted to generate a revenue by building a casino.  Just outside of San Francisco.   As The Sacramento Bee glumly notes, the Miwoks can get away with quite a lot along those lines because they have a reservation – including essentially ignoring state environmental laws – and they’ve been pursuing the construction of a casino ever since.  In fact, they’ve just recently finally jumped through the appropriate federal hoops – and if Jerry Brown is governor next year the tribe expects more help on the state level from him than, say, Arnold Schwarzenegger (taking over 700K in campaign contributions from tribal sources can produce that kind of expectation). Continue reading Boxer’s Indian casino ties.