Supreme Court rules in Native Hawaiian lands case
The state of Hawaii retains authority to sell, transfer or exchange Native Hawaiian lands, the U.S. Supreme Court said in a unanimous decision today.

In 1993, Congress apologized for the illegal overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy. The Hawaii Supreme Court said the resolution protected Native Hawaiian lands during the "ongoing reconciliation process."

Justice Samuel. A. Alito disagreed. Writing the majority opinion, he said the state court's decision was "incorrectly" based on federal law.

"Here, the State Supreme Court incorrectly held that Congress, by adopting the Apology Resolution, took away from the citizens of Hawaii the authority to resolve an issue that is of great importance to the people of the State," Alito wrote.

The case is Hawaii v. Office of Hawaiian Affairs.

Supreme Court Decision:
Syllabus | Opinion [Alito]

Supreme Court Documents:
Oral Argument Transcript | Docket Sheet No. 07-1372 | Petition for certiorari

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