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Navajo lawmakers name chief legislative counsel

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. -- A former Navajo Nation attorney general has been named the top legal counsel for the tribe's legislative branch.

Lawmakers voted 18-2 in favor of a bill Wednesday that gives Levon Henry the job.

The position has been vacant since January 2011 after the tribe's Supreme Court disbarred former legislative counsel Frank Seanez for advising lawmakers to defy court orders. Henry represented Seanez in the case, arguing that Navajo law allows debate about the legality or appropriateness of court decisions.

Henry also has served as executive director of DNA People's Legal Services and as president of the Navajo Nation Bar Association.

He takes over for Mariana Kahn, who had been acting chief legislative counsel.

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