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April 2010: Onieda Indian Nation v Madison County

We conclude that the Onieda Indian Nation is immune from the Counties' foreclosure actions under the principle that "[a]s a matter of federal law, an Indian tribe is subject to suit only where Congress has authorized the suit or the tribe has waived its immunity." it seems very unlikely the Supreme Court will agree to grant a petition for cert in Oneida Indian Nation v. Madison County. To be sure, the question whether tribal sovereign immunity can prevent foreclosure actions against tribally-owned fee lands is certworthy, and there may already be a split in authority of sorts, i.e. (the Second Circuit and the Mass. Supreme Judicial Court in a case involving the Aquinnah Wampanoag a few years back). On the the last page two of the three judges who ruled unanimously in this case basically make a plea for the Supreme Court to revisit two key Indian law cases that protect tribes from lawsuits.

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