Danielle Hiraldo

Danielle Hiraldo, PhD

University of Arizona
Outreach Specialist
Udall Center for Public Policy
Native Nations Institute

Poster Title: How Federalism Advances Rights of State-Recognized Tribes

To critics, the lack of government-to-government relationships with the federal government suggests that the 66 state-recognized tribes possess authority and jurisdiction secondary to federally recognized tribes (Allen et al 2007). Due to differences between the two statuses, state-recognized tribes must create space within state politics to advance their governance priorities. In the Southeast, this is particularly intriguing considering state politics often use a white-black binary ignoring southeastern state-recognized tribes. For example, North Carolina tribes successfully proposed modifications to Juvenile Code G.S. §7B-505 to allow for placement of Indigenous children from state-recognized tribes with state-recognized families (Hiraldo 2018). Scholars have largely ignored these tribal governance advancements in state politics creating gaps in the literature.

To close the gaps, the researchers study legislation from seven southeast states and hypothesize that Southeastern state-recognized tribes leverage the flexibility of the federal system to compel state governments to act in support of advancing Indigenous priorities. Broad research questions include: why are states passing legislation that recognize specific Indigenous rights? Are there themes in the policies enacted? To address these questions, the researchers built and coded a dataset of 90+ state statutes. Preliminary analysis indicates that legislation specific to government-to-government relationships has passed in all seven states suggesting that these states are “recognizing” specific governmental authorities of state-recognized tribes. We posit that state-recognized tribes use national Indigenous legislation as leverage to push for enactment of specific state legislation. Preliminary findings highlight bipartisan activity for state-recognized legislation.

Initial Meeting

I.  Who:

Client: Danielle Hiraldo (Senior researcher, Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina, University of Arizona – Native Nations Institute in the Udall Center for Studies in Public P0licy)

Consultants: Dean Billheimer, Chen Chen, Shahin Mohammadi, Mirjana Glisovic-Bensa (author)

II.  When:

12 September 2019, 1-2pm

III.  What:

A.  Summary of Client’s Problem

Danielle is looking at legislations passed form seven southeast states in attempt to answer why are states passing legislation that recognize specific indigenous rights. She is also looking to see if there are themes in the policies enacted. 

To answer those questions Danielle built and coded data set of about 77 state statues.

B.  Discussion 

Danielle explained to us how she collected the data, how long it took her and her team to code the data and she has asked for advice on how she can code variables so she can answer more questions. Danelle also  asked if we had any suggestions on what else can be answered/done with the data set that she has.  

IV.  Next Steps

We suggested the following:

- Try to collect all legislations introduced (not just the ones that have passes). That way more analysis could be done.

-We promised to do some analysis on the data that Danielle has given us. We will make some bar graphs to visually summarize data and see if there is any pattern.

Hiraldo Abstract

Hiraldo State and Tribe Legislation Data