Winnebago tribe will have party leadership and representation in the Democratic National Convention

The tribe will have a voice in politics for the first time ever

By Jamie Perez | jperez@kcautv.com

Published 07/24 2016 04:19PM

Updated 07/24 2016 11:05PM

For the first time ever, the Winnebago tribe will have a formal party chair in the upcoming Democratic National Convention. By having a place this year, they get to voice their opinion on issues that matter to them like healthcare and treaty rights. Not only will their voices be heard within their community but now they can have a national impact.
 
"I guess I just want to have an impact," says Michelle Lamere, the elected Nebraska Winnebago Tribe Delegate. "I just want to be able to say that I made a difference." 
 
Michelle Lamere will be one of two of the first official voices the Winnebago tribe has in the upcoming Democratic National Convention, something Michelle says she's never done before. 
 
"It's very important because I have never participated in the political process before and I always felt like my vote didn't matter," says Lamere. 
 
Members of the community who know Michelle say she's an excellent choice to be the voice of the Winnebago tribe.
 
"Michelle has been a lifelong part of the community, she's very actively engaged, she's a very hardworking individual, she's put quite a lot of time and effort during the last year advocating on behalf of the Bernie Sanders campaign," says Danelle Smith, Thurston County Democratic Chair.
 
Nebraska is sending 38 people to the DNC in total and to have leadership from members of the Winnebago tribe participate, means a lot to the community.
 
"Up until this point, we really haven't had a voice in the party, certainly not at the county level, but at the state level and at the national level and this is just a really great opportunity to get ourselves organized and make sure that our voice is heard," says Smith.
 
Smith also added that because the Winnebago tribe is growing larger, this is the perfect opportunity to finally have a voice to meet their individual needs in the upcoming election. 

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