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Published May 02, 2013, 03:32 PM

Spirit lake petition gathers enough votes for submission, circulators looking for more

Petition circulators have enough signatures to prompt a recall vote of Spirit Lake tribal chairman Roger Yankton but they say they're still in need of more people to sign the petition and they're finding supporters hard to come by.

By: Adam Ladwig, WDAZ

Petition circulators have enough signatures to prompt a recall vote of Spirit Lake tribal chairman Roger Yankton but they say they're still in need of more people to sign the petition and they're finding supporters hard to come by.

The push is still on to collect signatures, even though it's getting harder to find people to show support for removing Yankton. Doctor Erich Longie began circulating the petition. He says more than 550 people have signed, but few have signed in the last week. Spirit Lake tribal court says 540 signatures are needed to turn in a petition. Circulators want to collect at least 600, in case some are invalid. That creates a problem of finding people who want Yankton gone, but haven't already signed.

Longie: "The numbers that voted in the last election, which is around 900, and we're required to get 540 out of 900, that's a lot, that's over 50 percent of the voters we have to collect and that's almost unbelievable."

If the petition is verified once it's turned in, a public meeting will be held within seven days for tribal members to vote on keeping or ousting Yankton. Longie hopes to turn the petition in within a couple weeks.

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