Standing Rock Youth Put Pressure on Presidential Candidates to Oppose Dakota Access Pipeline

By Yessenia Funes Oct 27, 2016

Ten Standing Rock Sioux Tribe youth have left the frontlines of the Dakota Access Pipeline battle to visit New York City today (October 27). They have one mission: To break the silence on #NoDAPL from the two presidential candidates.

The election is less than two weeks away, yet Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton nor Republican candidate Donald Trump has expressed any support or opposition to the 1,172-mile-long pipeline or the movement against it.

The youth began the day with a water ceremony at the Brooklyn Heights Promenade at noon EST. From there, headed to Clinton’s headquarters near the Promenade and will then go to Trump Tower in midtown Manhattan.

An investigation this week by the Guardian revealed that Trump has between $500,000 to $1 million invested in Energy Transfer Partners, the company behind the controversial pipeline. Energy Transfer’s CEO Kelcy Warren has also given his campaign $103,000, according to the report. It’s not clear whether Clinton has any financial ties to the company.

President Barack Obama held a private meeting with the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal Chairman Harold Frazier on Tuesday, October 25, reports Indian Country Today Media Network. In an interview with Free Speech Radio News, Frazier said that the meeting went as “expected.”

He continued:

One of the things [the White House] assured me is that he is going to follow, continue the consultation process, which three agencies put in place and he’s reviewing the statutes, so that was good, because I think that’s important, that the laws that govern oil pipelines are followed. I’m happy that he is assuring us that he will be reviewing the laws.

In addition to increasing pressure on the White House and the winner of the presidential election, the water protectors have called upon the Department of Justice to investigate the actions of law enforcement. A recent investigation by the Morton County sheriff’s office shows that the private security guards, who unleashed dogs and pepper spray on pipeline opponents on September 3, were not properly licensed. According to the Guardian, they could face criminal charges.