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Cherokee Nation Election Results in Dispute (Jul 18, 2011)

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — Since Oklahoma's largest Indian tribe had its election three weeks ago, the incumbent and his challenger have each been declared the winner twice.

The results of the June 25 election remain in doubt for the Tahlequah-based Cherokee Nation as the tribe's Supreme Court meets Tuesday evening to begin sorting out the mess ahead of the Aug. 14 inauguration of the new president.

The court hearing comes after a third count of ballots cast in the June election over the weekend, in which unofficial results showed that Principal Chief Chad Smith had won by a razor-thin margin of five votes over his challenger, councilman Bill John Baker.

Later Tuesday, the justices could certify the weekend's election results, hear more evidence from attorneys representing each campaign or order a new election.

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