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Heitkamp glad Obama focused on Native children

CANNON BALL, N.D. (AP) - Sen. Heidi Heitkamp says she's pleased that President Barack Obama focused on Native American children during his trip to the Standing Rock Reservation.

Obama gave an afternoon speech Friday on the pow wow grounds in Cannon Ball. He said that young people should be able to live, work and raise a family on the land of their fathers and mothers.

Heitkamp says Obama's message is one that rings true not only on Standing Rock but across all of Indian Country.

The North Dakota Democrat says she's working on passing a bill endorsed by North Dakota's tribes that would create a national commission on Native American children to study on the effects of poverty, unemployment, child abuse, domestic violence, crime and substance abuse.