Henry Red Cloud, Democratic candidate for Public Utilities Commission, has been gathering supplies to support the “Water Protectors” protest camp at the Cannonball–Missouri confluence in North Dakotan. Red Cloud is also working the Dakota Access protests to drum up support for his campaign. Monday he issued this statement on Facebook to distinguish himself from his opponent, Commissioner Chris Nelson:
Let’s stand up and do something really important about the pipeline approval process!
My Republican opponent for the open seat on the Public Utilities Commission is Chris Nelson. He led the effort to approve the Dakota Access Pipeline. Illinois gets the oil, South Dakota gets the liability, the headaches and the spills.
Who does Chris Nelson work for – Big Oil or South Dakota?
Overall Chris puts a lot of effort into protecting the interests of oil companies rather than protecting South Dakota farmers, ranchers, tribes and all us regular citizens. For instance, he rejected South Dakotan farmers’ request that the Dakota Access Pipeline be routed around rather through their properties. And he called pipeline opponents’ request for an Environmental Impact Statement on the pipeline “out of line”… before rejecting it.
Who does Chris Nelson work for – Big Oil or South Dakota? [Henry Red Cloud, Facebook post, 2016.09.05]
Commissioner Nelson did vote for the Dakota Access pipeline last November.
Red Cloud is also taking a lead role in a meeting of tribal leaders at the protest camp this week:
Sacred Pipes not Sacrilegious Pipelines!
History is not something that happened a long time ago. It unfolds before us even to this day and this weekend will be a historic moment.
Wendell Yellow Bull Jr. is the keeper of Mahpiya Luta’s Fort Laramie Treaty pipe. He will travel to the Cannon Ball camp this week as will Arvol Looking Horse, Keeper of the Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe. They and other headsmen will meet and combine their smoke, their prayers and their wisdom in the Council Tipi that has been constructed at the camp. Wendell has asked me to lead the pipe into the camp and to be the speaker in the Council Tipi on behalf of Mahpiya Luta’s pipe and spirit.
I am humbled and greatly honored to be part of this historical meeting. I go with a good heart for Mother Earth, for her tears our water and for all the children who will come after us.
Let the Seven Council Fires burn bright and may we gather again as one Great Nation – Očhéthi Šakówiŋ [Henry Red Cloud, Facebook post, 2016.09.08].
The White House honored Red Cloud two years ago for his work on renewable energy in Indian Country. Perhaps Red Cloud can get the White House to pay attention to this nonrenewable-energy threat to Indian Country and everyone’s water.