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Navajo Nation President and Vice President Officially Endorse Hillary Clinton


Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye has endorsed Hillary Clinton in the U.S. presidential race. The tribe has historically supported Democratic candidates. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.

Begaye is urging all Navajos to vote for the former secretary of state. He says during her campaign, Clinton has committed to address several issues important to tribes like healthcare and education, public safety, and combating drug and alcohol abuse.

Navajo Vice President Jonathan Nez, who also endorsed Clinton, believes she’d continue tribal relationships fostered under the Obama administration.

“Eight years of that nation-to-nation dialogue with the U.S. and tribal communities have taken Indian Nations into the 21st century, I believe. She will do great things for Indian Country and for the Navajo people,” Nez says.

Both Nez and Begaye say Republican nominee Donald Trump would support policies that would threaten tribal sovereignty. They’re also concerned the GOP nominee wouldn’t honor treaties between tribes and the federal government.

The Navajo Nation will hold separate chapter elections on Nov. 8 to coincide with the national presidential vote. According to Navajo election officials, there are 130,321 registered voters on the reservation.  

Ryan Heinsius joined the KNAU newsroom as executive producer in 2013 and was named news director and managing editor in 2024. As a reporter, he has covered a broad range of stories from local, state and tribal politics to education, economy, energy and public lands issues, and frequently interviews internationally known and regional musicians. Ryan is an Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Public Media Journalists Association Award winner, and a frequent contributor to NPR's Morning Edition, All Things Considered and national newscast.
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