Wisconsin lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow members of federally recognized tribes to use their tribal identification cards for voter registration and more. The bill would allow tribal ID cards to be used to pick up medication at a pharmacy, as well as buy alcohol and tobacco products. State Sen. Jerry Petrowski, R-Marathon, said other states recognize tribal IDs as official forms of identification, including Idaho, Minnesota and Washington. “I think this bill is reasonable and I would hope you all would support it,” said Petrowski in a Senate Committee hearing Thursday.
Sokaogon Chippewa Tribal Chairman Chris McGeshick testified during the hearing that tribes issue ID cards so members can practice their rights to hunt, fish and gather under federal treaties.
“That identification card is valid for that, but we can’t utilize it for a number of other things,” said McGeshick. “But, yet in the state of Wisconsin, there’s so many different forms of identification that are accepted in the state that come from other states, other jurisdictions, other nations — just not tribal members.”