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Montana tribe votes to reinstate ousted president

BILLINGS, Mont. – Montana’s Northern Cheyenne Tribe has narrowly voted to re-elect the tribal president who was ousted by the tribal council in October.

The Billings Gazette reports preliminary results indicate Jace Killsback received 541 votes, two more than challenger Donna Fisher, in Tuesday’s special election.

The tribal council voted 9-1 to oust Killsback in October, arguing he was neglecting his duties and violating tribal bylaws. Killsback argued the allegations came from a small group of dissidents and the decision was made without him having a chance to respond.

The federal Bureau of Indian Affairs eventually found the council acted within its authority to remove Killsback from office.

Curtis Elkshoulder, spokesman for the tribe’s interim president, says Fisher said she didn’t plan to challenge Tuesday’s results.

Barring a recount, Killsback will be inaugurated on Jan. 15.