In a Riverside courtroom, Native Americans who trace their ancestry to full blood Santa Ynez were fighting for their right to belong.
Attorney Jon Velie, who has argued before the Supreme Court in the Cherokee Freedmen issue, was representing the group.
She ruled the BIA was reasonable in its determination that relied on evidence outside the Census that listed the clients Grandmother was a full blood and the clients were not going to be allowed in the Tribe. Fortunately, while she was reasoned in her decision she did not address the cases that were cited where a Tribal and Federal Court held it was improper to contradict the historical documents adopted by Tribes to determine members.'
The tentative ruling was very precise, but attorney Velie was able to point to discussion points and lead her back to the cases that disagreed with the tentative ruling's conclusion. The judge took the arguments under advisement
The Court will rule in a week. Please keep the Santa Ynez people in your thoughts they deserve their identity and no temporarily appointed government should be able to take it from them.