Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN), responding to the reintroduction of the Native Hawaiian Reorganization Act by Senator Daniel Akaka (D-HI), announced his opposition and placed the following statement in the Congressional Record:
On the Introduction of the Native Hawaiian Reorganization Act
Mr. ALEXANDER. Mr. President, today the Senator from Hawaii reintroduced the Native Hawaiian Reorganization Act, a bill that would create a new, race-based government within the borders of the United States. I strongly oppose this bill. This legislation was considered and rejected by the Senate last year; we ought not waste one moment of the Senate’s time on it this year. Instead, we should consider legislation that unites us all as Americans. Our nation must remain ‘one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all’ – not many nations, divided by race, with special privileges for some. Here are four reasons this bill should be stopped in its tracks:
1. It would create a new, sovereign government within our borders.
2. As noted by the U.S. Civil Rights Commission, the bill “would discriminate on the basis of race or national origin.”
3. The bill is really about transferring control over “land” and “other assets” to this new, race-based government.
4. Native Hawaiians are not just “another Indian tribe” since they do not meet the requirements under current law of being sovereign for the last 100 years, living as a separate and distinct community, and having a preexisting political organization.
I hope my colleagues will join me in opposing this dangerous piece of legislation