The Indian Civil Rights Act of 1968 (ICRA) applies many of the provisions of the U.S. Bill of Rights to Indian tribes (U.S.C. 25, sections 1301—3). Growing out of concern for Native Americans abused by both non-Indian and tribal agencies, the ICRA ostensibly gave federal courts jurisdiction to hear civil rights claims against tribal nations. Ten years after its enactment and considerable litigation under the act, the Supreme Court found that the court lacked jurisdiction to hear ICRA cases, considerably limiting the reach of the ICRA.

Prior to 1968, tribal governments ...

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