Three-Judge District Court: No Equal Protection Violations In Excluding Military From Reapportionment Population, Or in 44% Deviation

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Hawaii’s reapportionment commission

BY ROBERT THOMAS – It’s easy to report when you win a case, not so easy when you … don’t (at least not yet).

That’s the result in this stage of the Hawaii reapportionment case, as yesterday, a three-judge U.S. District Court denied the plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment and entered summary judgment for the state defendants.


We represent the plaintiffs by the way.

Here’s the court’s Opinion and Order Denying Plaintiffs’ Motion for Summary Judgment and Granting Defendants’ Motion for Summary Judgment.

We won’t comment on the case, but we can repeat what we told the papers:

We always believed that the issues in this case merited resolution by the U.S. Supreme Court.

We were hoping that a favorable decision from the Hawaii District Court would save us from taking it further, but alas no.

While we have not finished reviewing the Hawaii District Court’s rationale in detail, everything we’ve read so far leads us to believe that the Supreme Court will be interested in reviewing this decision, and in resolving the issues in our favor.

Here are some other reports on the decision:

More to follow. As a decision of a three-judge district court, we’re allowed to skip the Ninth Circuit and go straight to the Supreme Court with an as-of-right appeal.

More about the case here (including a complete set of briefs and relevant pleadings).

Opinion and Order Denying Plaintiff’s Motion for Summary Judgment and Granting Defendants’ Motion for Summa…

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Robert H. Thomas is one of the preeminent land use lawyers in Hawaii. He specializes in land use issues including regulatory takings, eminent domain, water rights, and voting rights cases. He has tried cases and appeals in Hawaii, California, and the federal courts. Robert received his LLM, with honors, from Columbia Law School where he was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar, and his JD from the University of Hawaii School of Law where he served as editor of the Law Review. Robert taught law at the University of Santa Clara School of Law, and was an exam grader and screener for the California Committee of Bar Examiners. He currently serves as the Chair of the Condemnation Law Committee of the American Bar Association’s Section on State & Local Government Law. He is the Hawaii member of Owners’ Counsel of America, a national network of the most experienced eminent domain and property rights lawyers. Membership in OCA is by invitation only, and is limited to a single attorney from each state. Robert is also the Managing Attorney for the Pacific Legal Foundation Hawaii Center, a non-profit legal foundation dedicated to protecting property rights and individual liberties. Reach him at He is also a frequent speaker on land use and eminent domain issues in Hawaii and nationwide. For a list of upcoming events and speaking engagements.


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