Oklahoma governor and Legislature prioritize tribal sovereignty (Part-2)

"The image of bewilderment that he has presented, we do not perceive it," Hoskin stated. "Every day, we witness cooperation."

Tobacco sales and car plate agreements with tribal governments were extended in a measure that required a special session of the legislature to overcome the governor's veto last year, and this year, the same problem is likely to arise.

Legislators are crossing their fingers that the governor's recent 10-year tobacco and vehicle tag arrangement with the Chickasaw Nation has helped warm relations between the tribes and Stitt. The Wyandotte, Apache, and Potawatomie tribes have all inked similar compacts

Joint Committee on State-Tribal Affairs chairman Sen. Brent Howard stated, "I see it as a very good indication that the state and the tribes will be able to work together." When asked about the matter, Howard echoed his sentiments.

The relationship between Stitt and tribal elders has been tense, but he is far from alone among Republican governors. Following her comments about Mexican drug cartels invading Native American reservations in Texas and her suggestion to deploy razor wire to the Lone Star State to discourage immigration, a South Dakota tribe barred Republican Governor Kristi Noem from the Pine Ridge Reservation on Saturday.

An income tax cut, which is close to Stitt's heart, is one of the topics that lawmakers in Oklahoma are likely to address this session. Senate leaders have argued that a 0.25% rate cut is too soon given that final revenue figures are still unavailable, even though the House had already approved the measure last week.

Oklahomans would save almost five times as much as they would with a 0.25 percent income tax decrease, according to figures provided over the weekend by Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat, who argues for a reduction in the state's share of the sales tax on groceries.

Oklahomans would see immediate relief and savings they could see every time they went to the grocery store if the grocery tax were eliminated," stated Treat, a Republican from Oklahoma City.