Four of the largest casino-operating tribes in the American state of Oklahoma have reportedly filed a federal lawsuit that is seeking to invalidate gaming compacts the state’s governor inked with the Comanche Nation and Otoe-Missouria Tribe in June.
According to a Saturday report from the Associated Press news service, the action from the Chickasaw Nation, Citizen Potawatomie Nation, Cherokee Nation and Choctaw Nation was lodged with the United States District Court for the District of Columbia late last week and is seeking a judgement that the United States Department of the Interior had violated federal law by later sanctioning the two agreements.
The Associated Press reported that the controversial compacts were negotiated by Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt and were to have permitted the Comanche Nation and Otoe-Missouira Tribe to begin offering sportsbetting alongside house-banked card and table games such as blackjack and roulette. However, the Oklahoma Supreme Court purportedly later annulled these deals due to the fact that they had not been put past legislators in the Oklahoma House of Representatives and the Oklahoma State Senate.
The lawsuit from the four tribes reportedly asserts that the two compacts have already been declared ‘invalid under Oklahoma law’ and must now have their federal legitimacy tackled ‘to avoid damage to the integrity of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.’
Reportedly read a joint statement issued by the four tribes…
“The tribes filed this suit to protect the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act’s established framework and the tribal operations conducted under it.”
Matthew Morgan, Chairman for the Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association, reportedly told the Associated Press that his group is supporting the action from the Chickasaw Nation, Citizen Potawatomie Nation, Cherokee Nation and Choctaw Nation due to the fact that it believes Stitt overstepped his authority in agreeing the deals with the Comanche Nation and Otoe-Missouria Tribe.
Reportedly read a statement from Morgan…
“As we have stated from the beginning, Governor Stitt never had the legal authority to enter into these gaming agreements. It is sad that Governor Stitt has placed the tribal governments in this position.”
The Associated Press reported that it has been a bad summer for Stitt as he recently moreover lost a long-running dispute in federal court concerning whether 15-year gaming compacts his state inked with the Cherokee Nation, Choctaw Nation and Chickasaw Nation in 2004 had contained automatic rollover clauses.