JOHN BERREY: Quapaw leader backs Hillary Clinton.
The website indianz.com reports
that John Berrey
, leader of the Quapaw Tribe
of Oklahoma, is endorsing Hillary Clinton
for president though he's called himself a Republican since 2002.
"Moving forward, we need a president who will be inclusive and reach out to all people," Berrey said in a statement on Tuesday. "We need a president who has the experience and ability to bring the nation together and work as a team for the betterment of all, regardless of race, income or gender."
"Having met Hillary and talked with her about her vision for the future, I believe she is the best person to occupy the Oval Office," Berrey added.
Berry's announcement isn't surprising. The tribe sponsored celebratory events during the 10th anniversary of the opening of the Clinton Presidential Center in Little Rock, events it termed a "homecoming" because of the tribe's recent purchase of ancestral lands near the Little Rock Port.
The Clintons have been warmer to associations with the Quapaw than the business community of Little Rock. Political leaders and the Little Rock Port Authority have inveighed against the possibility — no such plans exist, Berry says — the Quapaw might try to establish a casino in Arkansas, as they have done in Oklahoma. Resistance to that from existing gambling operators in Little Rock was likely behind the Port Authority's refusal to join a memorandum of understanding on its land near the port. Elected officials from County Judge Barry Hyde to Mayor Mark Stodola have been cool to the tribe. Perhaps somebody in higher office will be warmer.