Citing Tribes’ Rights, Kawerak and BSEG Oppose Kavanaugh

Man in dark suit stands inside the White House, looking at a folder of papers.

The Bering Sea Elders Group (BSEG) and Kawerak have both released public statements opposing U.S. Supreme Court justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Kawerak Inc. issued a statement earlier this month (September 10) urging Sen. Lisa Murkowski to vote “no” on Brett Kavanaugh. They expressed concern that Kavanaugh’s support of “state’s rights” could affect subsistence protections for Alaska Natives. The Supreme Court is set to hear Sturgeon v. Frost on November 5, in a case that could impact control of Alaska waters.

The BSEG echoes the concerns of Kawerak and other Native rights’ groups around the country, stating in a press release what they call a misunderstanding of the “inherent status, rights, and roles of federally recognized Tribes.” They are also concerned that his judicial interpretation between federal and tribal governments could put programs like the Indian Child Welfare Act and the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act at risk.

The group also called for an investigation of Kavanaugh after three women have now accused him of sexual assault and attempted rape. Kavanaugh denies the allegations.

Image at top: Brett Kavanaugh stands outside the Oval Office in the White House, Washington, D.C. Date unknown. Photo: White House, public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.


  1. Paul R. Jones on September 28, 2018 at 7:46 am

    Having read this article, exactly where are the enumerated powers in the United States Constitution to make this post true> “… “inherent status, rights, and roles of federally recognized Tribes.”?

  2. Ron Sagnella on October 1, 2018 at 1:59 am

    This is outrageous! There is absolutely no concrete evidence that supports the vicious allegations made against this good man. The accuser is a trauma victim in search for a face. She cannot remember exactly when this happened. She cannot give the exact location and every “witness” she has presented has denied knowledge of the alleged incident. Do keep in mind that DNA evidence placed Bill Clinton in contact with his young girl friend. It was his DNA but the Democrats were mum. No need to impeach… outrageous. Do keep in mind that this supposed incident took place almost 40 years ago. Not a word from the victim in all those years. Suddenly… who is paying for her lawyers? She isn’t. Christine B Ford says she attended 10 of these get drunk and line up to sexually assault a woman. And no one in high school knew anything about this? Absurd. If there was a party and drinking and a sexually attack occurred just once, word would be out fast!!!! Why would she repeatedly place herself in danger of further assault? KNOM may present what the tribes believe. That is simple reporting. But if KNOM concurs with these charges, I will never again make my humble donation.

    • Ron Sagnella on October 1, 2018 at 2:03 am

      P.S. There should be a way of correcting typos when submitting an opinion. The print is small and my eyes are old. Regret typos but cannot correct.

      • David Dodman on October 1, 2018 at 9:56 am

        Hi Ron, just to be clear, neither KNOM Radio Mission nor its news department has taken a stance or opinion on the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh, his judicial record, or the charges against him. As you wrote, this is indeed “simple reporting” on tribal organizations in our area on a subject of relevance to our region.

        As for the idea of correcting typos after submitting a comment, this is something I’ll look into! I don’t believe our current commenting system allows it, and I’m not sure it’s a feature we could implement in the near future. But again, I’ll explore the possibility.

        Thanks for your readership and support. If you have any further questions or concerns, feel free to get in touch.

        David Dodman
        Web & IT Director, KNOM