President Obama at the White House Tribal Nations Summit
Presidential Trip will be streamed this afternoon streamed live at http:/www.whitehouse.gov/live. The President and First Lady will land at Bismarck at approximately 1:45 p.m. – CDT and will then go to Cannon Ball, North Dakota.
CANNON BALL, NORTH DAKOTA — The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe will host President Barack Obama a First Lady Michelle Obama today in a historic presidential trip to an Indian reservation.
President Obama is fulfilling a promise he made to tribal leaders last November at the White House Tribal Nations Summit.
While in North Dakota, the President and First Lady will participate in a roundtable discussion with American Indian youth.
Following meeting with the youth, the President and First Lady will attend the Cannon Ball Flag Day Celebration, during which the President will deliver remarks.
Chairman Dave Archambault
“It is an honor to host the President and First Lady. We are grateful for this opportunity. We are excited,” commented Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s Chairman Dave Archambault II in a telephone interview with Native News Online.
“We are excited President Obama will participate in the Cannon Ball Flag Day Celebration. There will be over 80 flags represented there. The celebration is a time to honor our veterans. American Indians have participated at a high percentage in the U.S. military. So it is appropriate President Obama will be there,” continued Archambault.
Prior to becoming president, in 2008 then Candidate Obama visited the Crow Nation in Montana where he was adopted by the Black Eagle family and was given a Crow name: Awe Kooda Bilaxpak Kuxshish — or “One Who Helps People Throughout the Land.”
Archambault said he does not anticipate the President receiving a Sioux name today.
However, Archambault wants three things to come of the Presidential trip for all of Indian country: reenforcement of the sovereignty of American Indian tribal nations; the value of Native youth and economic development opportunities for American Indians.
Presidential visits to Indian reservations are extremely rare. President Bill Clinton was the last sitting U.S. president to visit an Indian reservation when he did so in 1999 to the Pine Ridge Indian reservation. Prior to President Clinton’s visit, President Franklin Roosevelt visited the Cherokee Nation in North Carolina in 1936.