Monday, August 20, 2007

5th Circuit Strikes Down Seminole "Fix"

In Texas v. United States, the Fifth Circuit struck down the Class III regulations (25 CFR Part 291) designed by the Secretary to allow tribes to complete the Class III compacting process where a state (such as Texas) raises its Eleventh Amendment immunity.

While not a particular surprise given the conservative reputation of the 5th Circuit and its Chief Judge (Edith Jones, once on the short list for the O'Connor/Rehnquist vacancies), not to mention the fact that IGRA didn't explicitly authorize the regs, it is a sad reminder of the state of federal Indian law created by a passive/inert Congress and an aggressive, hostile federal judiciary.


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