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Shawnee tribe reschedules election

SHAWNEE — An Absentee Shawnee Tribe election has been rescheduled from today to June 28 after a judge ruled that two candidates were wrongly eliminated from the ballot.

Election Board Commissioner Sherman Tiger said he is concerned tribal members will be confused about when to vote.

The polls will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. June 28. Tribal members can vote at tribal headquarters, 2025 S Gordon Cooper in Shawnee, or at the community center at 1970 156 Ave. in Little Axe.

A tribal judge ruled that candidates Kenneth Blanchard and Cynthia Carpenter were wrongly disqualified. Blanchard, of Newalla, is a candidate for lieutenant governor and Carpenter, of Shawnee, is a candidate for a seat on the executive committee.

Michael Warwick, chief judge for the tribe's Supreme Court, ordered the election board reinstate them. At a hearing this week, Warwick ruled that if new ballots didn't reflect their names by Tuesday, he would find them in contempt of court.

Tiger said it appears some members of the commission want to decide who runs for office to better the odds for their favored candidates.

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