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Feds say judge should not block Native Hawaiian election

The U.S. Department of the Interior says a judge shouldn’t grant an injunction against an election process that’s underway for those with Native Hawaiian ancestry.

The department filed what’s known as a friend-of-the-court brief in a lawsuit challenging the election. The lawsuit says a race-based election is unconstitutional.

An election is planned for November to elect delegates for a convention to determine self-governance for Native Hawaiians.

The judge in the case invited the department to weigh in after the department outlined a proposal to establish a possible government-to-government relationship if a Native Hawaiian government is formed and wants such a relationship.

The department notes that Native American tribes hold elections that exclude non-natives.

A hearing is scheduled for Tuesday in the plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction.

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