Kline, McCollum Take Different Approaches on Native American Issues

QUERY : Do you pick the Washington Palefaces or the New England Patriots in the next NFL Tax-Exempt Super Bowl ?

My gut tells me that John Kline and Betty McCollum both would pick the Patriots — but for different reasons.

It’s pretty easy to imagine “Grandpa” Kline talking to any of his four grandchildren about the Patriots and easily being able to “describe” a patriot … but how do you explain to a child what a “paleface” is ?

Of course, we know that the odds are not good that the Patriots and Palefaces will play in the NFL Tax-Exempt Super Bowl … mostly because there is not a team nicknamed “Palefaces” but the NFL franchise in Washington goes by the nickname “Redskins”.
So, “Grandpa” Kline might have a little challenge describing a “Redskin”. Oh, sure he could reference the September 24,1963 Winona, Minnesota newspaper that used the word as part of a bounty notice :

THE State reward for dead Indians has been increased to $200 for every red-skin sent to Purgatory. This sum is more than the dead bodies of all the Indians east of the Red River are worth.

The question of “Redskins” is actually a topic in Congress as H.R. 1278 has been offered by Tom Cole (R-OK-04), Betty McCollum (D-MN-04) and 18 other Members. The purpose of H.R. 1278 is to amend the Trademark Act of 1946 regarding the disparagement of Native American persons or peoples through marks that use the term “redskin”.

John Kline is not presently a co-sponsor of the legislation. But that is not too much of a surprise … after all the Washington Redskins belong to the Tax-Exempt NFL {classified 501(c)(6)} yet are still able to make contributions to the Kline For Congress campaign. With the fiscal problems facing the country, even leading Republicans are questioning the need for the tax exemption ( see S. 1524 Properly Reducing Over exemptions for Sports Act aka the `PRO Sports Act’) … but not John Kline.

Actually, when you compare the McCollum and Kline approaches to Native Americans issues, it is clear where each stands.

Take the Violence Against Women Act … John Kline wanted the Eric Cantor version that provided limited protection for Native American women … Tom Cole (R-OK-04) and Betty McCollum fought for and achieved a better bill.

Take the sequester … and its cuts to Impact Aid which funds education programs for native American families which impacts about 1,400 school districts serving roughly 11 million children nationwide. Education Chairman Kline was silent while Betty McCollum was protesting the cuts.
Further, while Medicare, Medicaid, veterans’ health care and other programs were protected from sequestration cuts, Indian Health Services faced cuts. Congresswoman McCollum authored bipartisan legislation that would reduce the harmful impact of sequestration on the Indian Health Service and the urban Indian health programs that receive IHS funding – H.R. 1371 which was co-sponsored by Tom Cole (R-OK-04) but not by John Kline.

Betty McCollum’s stance should not be a surprise … after all, she is the co-Chair of the Native American Caucus and received the National Council of Urban Indian Health (NCUIH) 2013 Congressional Leadership Award.

Conversely, John Kline is a Member of the Washington DC Congressional Cigar Association and co-sponsor of H.R.792 : Traditional Cigar Manufacturing and Small Business Jobs Preservation Act of 2013 (aka “jobs” really means an industry “tax cut” )

At the most recent State of the Union, Betty McCollum’s guest was Clarence Hightower, executive director of the Community Action Partnership of Ramsey and Washington Counties … who praised H.R. 3854 Community Economic Opportunity Act of 2014 introduced by Congresswoman Betty McCollum and Congressmen Mike Fitzpatrick (R-PA-08) … H.R. 3854 is presently awaiting Chairman Kline to hold a hearing.

Conversely, John Kline tweeted about his guest :

FunFact … did you know that John Kline’s guest at the State of the Union was Keith Anderson, vice chairman of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community … and did you know that Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community gave a $5,000 contribution to John Kline’s Freedom and Security PAC on December 17, 2013 ?

Yeah, there is a clear difference … one is working in a bipartisan manner for Americans families and communities throughout our nation … and one is working to retain his power in Washington.

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