substantial most vocal was Donald Trump, who

substantial exclusivity, or at
least challenging them.

            After
the Seminole ruling, the Secretary of the Interior (SOI), who was required to
give final approval to a Tribal-State compact, was the only protection tribes
had from being manipulated by the state. 
However, the Secretary maintained that substantial exclusivity agreements
were compatible with the meaning of good faith because the state “offered
meaningful concessions in return for its demands” (Alexander II, 2017). In the past, the DOI required that
states demonstrate a relationship between the percentage of revenue demanded
and the services provided by the government in return.  However, this is no longer enforced. (Skeen, 2006).

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            As
state governments continued battling for the right to tax revenues on Indian
gaming, competing casino owners recognized the threat posed by reservation
casinos if they weren’t legally bound by the same state regulations that other
gaming operations had to obey. Of these challengers, perhaps the most vocal was
Donald Trump, who was in the process of developing a gambling empire in
Atlantic City poised to dominate gaming on the east coast.  By 1990, Trump lobbied an aggressive campaign
against Indian gaming rights. In a 1993 interview with controversial radio
host, Don Imus, Trump insisted that organized crime on reservations was
“rampant” and claimed that he probably had “more Indian blood than a lot of
so-called Indians that are trying to open up the reservations” (Boburg, 2016). Trump’s unfounded
allegations received backlash from the Native American community as the
National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA) immediately filed a complaint with
the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for his obscene remarks during the
interview, but the FCC declined to take action due to their limited authority
regarding freedom of speech (Boburg, 2016). 

            In
the article entitled, “Settler colonialism and the elimination of the native,”
Patrick Wolfe compares the process of settler colonialism to genocide.  He argues that settler colonialism is a
“logic of elimination” with the primary goal of eradicating and eventually
eliminating indigenous people to occupy their land. As Wolfe explains, “When
invasion is recognized as a structure rather than an event, its history does
not stop when it moves on from the era of frontier homicide.” The United States
government completed the first step of this process when they forcibly moved
Native American tribes to reservations. Tribes were then granted sovereignty as
“domestic dependent nations” (Prygoski,
nd).  In many ways, this tribal sovereignty
isolated Native American populations and provided little opportunity for sustainability
without assistance from the American government. It also effectively segregated
them from states and reinforced their status as Indian, which made their existence obsolete to most, as they were
left to fend for themselves. Predictably, Native Americans tribes living on
reservations would continue to dwindle as they struggled to assimilate to their
new reality.

The gaming
industry provided the best opportunity for Native American tribes to rejuvenate
their communities.  Their tribal
sovereignty, which was originally granted as a means of separating them from
the United States, exempted them from state regulation and taxation.  As the popularity of Indian gaming began to
grow in the 1970’s and 1980’s, state governments started to realize that their
gaming revenue was being challenged by competing Indian operations. Clearly,
Indian gaming was on the rise and states wanted a percentage of the revenue
that reservations were making within their borders.  States continued lobbying the federal
government to regulate Indian gaming, arguing that reservation casinos were
susceptible to organized crime and would require their protection.  Meanwhile, tribal governments simply wanted
to maintain their economic and political independence from the state. 

Despite being
considered a “compromise” between tribes and states, the enactment of the IGRA only
served to satisfy state governments. Although tribes were permitted to regulate
Class I and Class II gaming, they were now required to make Tribal-State
compacts to run Class III operations. Of course, tribes had already been
operating large-scale bingo parlors since the 1970’s, which defines Class II
gaming, so they weren’t being granted anything but the state’s support in
preventing the infiltration of organized crime (Meister,
2017).   Although
tribal sovereignty was supposed to prevent states from imposing taxes on
tribes, the IGRA now provided a method through which states could earn a
percentage of tribes’ casino revenues. Furthermore, the Seminole ruling in 1991
recognized State’s sovereign immunity under the 11th amendment, and
prohibited tribes from suing states in federal court thereafter.

            States
would retain inherent socio-economic benefits from Native American gaming even
without being compensated in the form of revenue-sharing agreements. There are
several ways in which gaming has positive effects on neighboring
off-reservation communities.  Firstly,
gaming brings employment opportunities for local and regional businesses that
function to stimulate the state’s economy. People from different states travel
to the casino and make purchases that contribute to the state’s gains on tax
revenue.  Furthermore, Indian gaming
revenue isn’t associated with the global economy and stays within state,
usually to assist in regional development which clearly benefits the state (Alexander II,
2017).  Class III gaming on reservations tends to
provide the state with even more benefits. 
For instance, tribes conducting Class III operations often make
investments in education, health services, and social programs, attempting to
improve the standard of living on reservations. In fact, studies have shown
that a state’s association with a tribe in Class III gaming can lead to higher
income levels, better health, fewer risky behaviors, and an increase in access
to healthcare.