Sign the petition: defend the 1st Amendment rights of Native Americans

Say NO to the "XL Con" and YES to the 1st Amendment

I was the only non-incumbent candidate running for the United States Senate in 2014 to stand firmly against the Keystone XL pipeline. Why? Simple -- because it was a con.

I did my own research and found that it was nothing but a “big money” – “big oil” con job!  I told the late Ed Schultz in a nationally broadcast MSNBC interview that I couldn’t support it by stating emphatically — “no jobs, no oil, no way!!!”

Fast forward -- South Dakota, under the leadership of it’s newly elected Governor Kristi Noem, who lead the charge in the U.S. House of Representatives to repeal the Affordable Care Act, signed two bills this past March whose undeniable purpose was aimed at deterring future protests of the building of the XL pipeline in a blatant affront to the First Amendment.

  • Senate Bill 189 allows the state, and potentially a third party in partnership with the state, to sue protesters or "riot boosters" for up to three times the damage estimate to cover extraordinary law enforcement costs related to a pipeline's construction. Senate Bill 190 created the Pipeline Engagement Activity Coordination Expenses, or PEACE fund, to pay for those extraordinary costs.

  • In March, Governor Kristi Noem of South Dakota signed the legislation to usher in a new law that has come to be known informally as the Riot Boosting Act: an assault on Americans’ right to protest that perversely tries to pass itself off as a good-governance measure. Conceived with the assistance of TC Energy (née TransCanada)—the company behind the embattled Keystone XL pipeline—this law would, among other things, authorize the state to sue individuals and groups for protesting projects like Keystone XL, should there be any damages as a result of the protest.

In response, the Oglala Lakota Nation -- the largest Native American Tribe in South Dakota, informed Governor Noem that she was banned from the Pine Ridge Reservation and that her banishment would remain in effect until she withdrew her support of the two bills she signed. In June, the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe banned TransCanada contractors from tribal lands.

Sign our petition supporting the Oglala Lakota Nation and demand that Governor Noem rescind her support of these blatant efforts to suppress the First Amendment rights of Native Americans and all Americans to peacefully assemble. 

Sincerely,

Rick Weiland 

Co-Founder, TakeItBack.Org

2014 U.S. Senate Candidate SD

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To: Governor Kristi Noem

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