Campaign Laws Questioned In Choctaw Casino Campaign

One of the groups fighting the Choctaw casino is claiming the Jackson Choctaw Partnership has violated campaign reporting laws. Coast Businesses for Fair Play sent a complaint to the Secretary of State. And that complaint was forwarded to the Attorney General's office.

The anti Choctaw casino coalition contends that Choctaw billboards and TV ads cost more than $200. Therefore, the fair play group says, the Jackson Choctaw Partnership should submit campaign finance reports. And according to the Secretary of State, no statement of organization forms have been turned in.

An attorney for the Choctaws says it's the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, and not a partnership that's paying for the ads. Consequently, state campaign laws don't apply to the Indian tribe.

Sharon Powell is a public affairs representative for the Choctaws.  She called the campaign complaint, "A last ditch effort to confuse the issue."  Powell said the tribe has participated in state politics since 1945.  And no other complaints have ever been filed.  Once Choctaw leaders review the complaint, they'll issue a formal response.