Wabanaki Alliance Coalition hosts rally in Augusta regarding Question 6

Published: Oct. 9, 2023 at 5:49 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Maine (WAGM) - In honor of Indigenous People’s Day the Wabanaki Alliance Coalition rallied in Augusta in favor of Question 6, a referendum question that will be on the November 7 ballot.

More than 200 people came out to show support for Question 6, which would restore the full printing of Maine’s constitution. Currently three sections, which include treaty and other obligation details, are left out of the printed version of the constitution. Governor Janet Mills opposes question 6, saying in a statement that the sections were dropped from printed copies back in 1876 to make the constitution more readable.

In a phone conversation with Penobscot Nation Ambassador and Wabanaki Alliance President Maulian Bryant, she explained why hundreds of people gathered at the rally.

“It’s no secret that the tribes and the state don’t have the best relationship a lot of the time, and we have a lot of policy struggles and uneven litigation, and a lot of lack of clarity, I think, in communication with the state sometimes,” President Bryant said. “So when we’re thinking about this relationship it needs to be based in truth and respect. And if we are hiding that original documentation of those treaty obligations, it really sends a message to tribes that maybe we don’t matter enough to be in the printed version of the constitution.”

In a press release from the Wabanaki Alliance, President Bryant explains why the Alliance rallied in favor for Question 6. “By voting yes on Question 6 Mainers can support the Wabanaki by passing a constitutional amendment that would restore printing a section of the founding document that details treaty and other obligations that Maine assumed from Massachusetts as a condition of statehood in 1820,” says President Bryant.

After the rally, the group went out into the Augusta community to talk to voters. President Bryant says it was incredible to see hundreds of people come together and gather for the rally.