Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Voting Rights Court Case Hearing Today At 3:30 In Tribal Meeting Room

Feather News
Updated with footnote

A hearing will be held at 3:30 p.m. this afternoon in the voting rights case of Kenneth Davison v. The Mohegan Tribe Election Committee and the Mohegan Tribe. At issue in the case is whether requiring Tribal members to vote for all elective positions available in a tribal election violates, among other things, Tribal members' freedom of speech. Davison asserts that Tribal members should be allowed to vote for fewer candidates than there are positions available and forcing Tribal members to vote for more candidates than they actually prefer is a violation of Tribal members' civil rights.

The judge's decision on a summary judgment motion on the case, which has already been argued in court, is still pending but that aspect of the case will not be the subject of today's hearing.

The subject of today's hearing will be, according to the hearing notice: "The disclosure by Associate Judge Jane W. Freeman to all parties of record in this case that she, in her capacity as Tribal Court Judge of the Mohegan Tribe of Indians of Connecticut, has been named a Respondent in a "Petition For Order of Superintending Control, For Stay Of and To Vacate Tribal Court Order and Request For Immediate Hearing" filed with the Council of Elders of the Mohegan Tribe of Indians of Connecticut, by the Tribe, as Petitioner, and designated as number COE-1-2009. The Tribe is a Defendant in this case (Kenneth Davison v. the Mohegan Tribe Election Committee and the Mohegan Tribe) and there is currently pending before Judge Freeman a Motion For Summary Judgment filed by the Tribe and the Mohegan Tribe Election Committee."

Today's hearing at 3:30 p.m. is open to the public.

Since the editor of Feather News, Davison, is the Plaintiff in this Voting Rights court case, readers comments cannot be accepted to this article.

Note: The defendants and plaintiff both later agreed at the hearing to agree to let Judge Freeman rule on the pending motion for summary judgment.