State's Right

Hawaii's land reform is upheld

The ruling sounded more fitting for El Salvador than the U.S. Indeed, last week's Supreme Court decision upholding Hawaii's right to break up large privately held estates and redistribute ownership to the tenants seemed downright radical. But the unanimous 8-0 ruling* was made for the most conservative of reasons. Said Hawaii's deputy attorney general Michael Lilly: "It's a classic states' rights case."

The decision grew out of a suit challenging the constitutionality of the Land Reform Act passed by Hawaii's legislature in 1967. This law was designed to put...

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