After the Supreme Court's shocking decision in favor of the Bay Mills Indian Country, leading law blog, Law360, quoted Gabe Galanda at length about the decision, in "Bay Mills Ruling To Fuel New Fights Over Tribal Immunity."
“Bay Mills is the most significant Supreme Court win for Native America in the last 25 years, maybe ever," Gabriel S. Galanda of Galanda Broadman PLLC told Law360. "It categorically affirms not only tribal sovereign immunity from state action, but also tribal sovereignty and Indian gaming in general. ... Still, tribal governments are nowhere near out of the woods.”
For one thing, both Justice Elena Kagan, in a footnote to the majority opinion, and Justice Clarence Thomas in his dissent, alluded to an open question that remains: Does tribal sovereign immunity extend to an off-reservation tort, like an automobile accident caused by a drunk driver or casino patron? . . .
Lower courts could take the Supreme Court opinion as a cue to abandon sovereign immunity precedent if there's “special justification,” such as if a claimant were unable to secure some form of remedy otherwise, experts say.
“That passage [in the majority opinion] can be read by lower court judges as a signal to develop a remedy for a tort claimant, especially off-reservation, and allow the federal appellate process to go from there,” Galanda said.
Gabe and his partner Anthony Broadman were previously very critical of those federal powers that be, in particular, who did not moot the case before it reached the typically anti-Indian High Court (see here, and here.)
Gabriel “Gabe” Galanda is the Managing Partner at Galanda Broadman. He is an enrolled member of the Round Valley Indian Tribes of Covelo, California. Gabe can be reached at 206.300.7801 or email@example.com.