Shinnecock Nation voters oust incumbent trustee in run-off
The Shinnecock Nation of New York held its first run-off election in over 200 years.
Voters ousted incumbent Lance Gumbs and elected Frederick C. Bess, a former trustee. This will be Bess's sixth term on the board.
This was the tribe's first election since gaining federal recognition last October.
Get the Story:
Bess Wins Shinnecock Trustee Runoff (The Southampton Patch 4/12)
Shinnecock Nation holds first election after federal recognition (4/6)
Blogger's Update: A published report in the Southampton News confirms some tribal members believe that Trustee Bess is a tool of Detroit casino syndicator Michael J. Malik, Sr. Malik and his Gateway Casino Resorts syndicate have bankrolled the Shinnecock quest for Federal Recognition and other steps needed to develop gambling halls. Some reports suggest Malik and his investors have spent upwards of $40 million advancing their casino dreams in New York. It's not clear what has caused the rift between Lance Gumbs and Malik but it seems to have driven a large wedge between the two. It may be the notion that Gumbs prefers the Shinnecock develop gambling halls nearer their Long Island Reservation. Detroiter Malik might obviously like to open gambling halls more convenient to Manhattan -- perhaps even in New York Harbor.