Tammy W. Cowart

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There are three federally recognized Native American tribes in Texas: the Alabama-Coushatta, the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo, and the Texas band of Oklahoma Kickapoo. The Kickapoo tribe is the only one allowed to operate a gaming center within the state of Texas, due solely to a federal law that the federal government passed thirty years ago. The Alabama-Coushatta and Ysleta del Sur Pueblo tribes are some of the only tribes prohibited from operating gaming operations under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. The result is detrimental to these tribes and the Texas economy. This paper will examine the history of the tribes, the litigation between the tribes and the state, and the legislative efforts which have attempted to rectify the exclusion of the tribes from the Indian Gaming Regulatory Agency. Finally, ethical considerations will be examined, and the very recent U.S. Supreme Court decision will be discussed.

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