Cherokee Nation Constitution


Cherokee Nation is spread across 14 counties in northeastern Oklahoma with a population of 300,000 people. The constitution was enacted in 2003. Cherokee Nation allows citizens who live outside the territory to vote in elections and be represented on the council.

Preamble: We, the People of the Cherokee Nation, in order to preserve our sovereignty, enrich our culture, achieve and maintain a desirable measure of prosperity and the blessings of freedom, acknowledging with humility and gratitude the goodness, aid and guidance of the Sovereign Ruler of the Universe in permitting us to do so, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the government of the Cherokee Nation.

Native Nations

Cherokee Nation. 2003. "Constitution of the Cherokee Nation." Tahlequah, OK.

Related Resources


Cherokee Nation Councilor Julia Coates presents an overview of the constitutional history of the Cherokee Nation, and chronicles the process the Cherokee Nation followed to reform its constitution in 1999.

Overcoming the Politics of Reform: The Story of the 1999 Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma Constitutional Convention

A pressing international challenge is developing processes of constitution-making that manage the politics of reform and produce legitimate and effective constitutions. This challenge is of special concern for numerous American Indian nations that have been embroiled in dual governments and…

iPhone App: The Cherokee Nation Constitution

In 2011, the Cherokee Nation created an iPhone app that provides app users the opportunity to peruse the Nation's current constitution, which was drafted in 1999 and ratified in 2006. Below is some background about the constitution: The 1999 [Cherokee Nation] constitution convention created this…