WASHINGTON –U.S. Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, has pulled in more than $50,000 in campaign contributions from tribes in the last few months. He chairs the House subcommittee on Indian and Alaska Native Affairs.
Many of the donations came from Indian tribes outside of Alaska, McClatchy is reporting.
Disclosures required under campaign finance law show that tribes in California, Texas, Oklahoma, Michigan, Minnesota, and North Dakota were contributors. According to the report, the United Auburn Indian Community of California contributed a total of $3,809 in in-kind contributions for a fundraiser and lodging, was later reimbursed by the Young campaign for the same amount.
The donations bring Young’s tally to approximately $500,000 to run a campaign in which he still has no serious, established challenger.
Young is among many politicians – both Democrats and Republicans – who raise big bucks from tribes. President Barack Obama hosted a tribal fundraiser on January 27 in which he secured more than $1 million from Native donors.
Young has long been considered a strong supporter of Indian country issues.
“The president could even do it by executive order—bring [Larry] Echo Hawk to the table so he can position himself without the threat of being replaced by the Secretary of the Interior. We need an advocate,” Young said. “I want the people in Indian country who want to determine their own destiny to have the ability to do it, and not be inhibited by other government agencies.”
Young has held his seat in the U.S. Congress since 1973.