FederalIssuesU.S. Supreme Court Grants Appeal in Ysleta Del Sur Pueblo’s Tribal Gambling Case


2021 Ysleta Del Sur Pueblo Tribal Council (Photo Courtesy of Ysleta Del Sur Pueblo) An El Paso-area Indian tribe that has for decades sought the right to regulate its own gambling activities recently gained the attention of the nation’s high court.

The United States Supreme Court granted an appeal , also known as a writ of certiorari, on Monday, October 18 in a suit between the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo and the State of Texas over a 1994 ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

According to the tribe’s court documents, the central issue in the case is whether the tribe has the right under its 1987 Restoration Act to regulate gambling activity that is not otherwise prohibited by Texas law, such as electronic bingo.

The tribe claims the Fifth Circuit’s ruling in 1994 improperly “grant[ed] Texas regulatory jurisdiction over non-prohibited gaming activities” on the Pueblo’s land as well as on the land of the Alabama-Coushatta (AC) Tribe of Texas.

In its opposition brief , the State of Texas framed the question as whether the tribe should be required to comply with federal and state law, suggesting that the tribe “developed buyer’s remorse” after agreeing to obey Texas gambling laws prior to the passage of the 1987 Restoration Act.

“The question presented in the most recent chapter in this legal saga is whether the lower courts correctly held that the Tribe violated Texas public policy by operating a casino that offers thousands of ‘bingo’ devices that are designed to be […]

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