Nhsc-v1-280

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nhsc-v1-280

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a speech in which he spoke "at some length regarding the changes that had lately taken place, advising the natives to go to the proper offices and take the oath to support the new Constitution and thereby qualify themselves to vote." 109/

The reformist (i.e., government) party won the election, and it "was clear that many of the native Hawaiians, especially on the outside islands, had voted for the reform candidates." 110/ It was noted, however, that on Oahu and in Honolulu there was strong native population opposition and that "it was the votes of foreigners, including the Portuguese, enfranchised by the new constitution, that gave the Reform Party its decisive victory." 111/

The reformers proceeded to either repeal or enact laws that further eroded the power of the king. However, Kalakaua still retained the power to veto legislation under the Constitution of 1887 and after the elections of 1887 promptly proceeded to veto five bills. One of these was "an act relating to the military forces of the kingdom (providing for a salaried brigadier general as commanding general, and transferring general supervision of the military from the minister of foreign affairs to the minister of the interior)." 112/ The Minister of Foreign Affairs at the time was Godfrey Brown, a friend of the king who had tried to disband the Honolulu Rifles and change relations between the cabinet and the king, in the king's favor. The enactment of this law was "understood to be a slap at Minister Brown." 113/ Princess Liliuokalani wrote in her diary on November 14, 1887, that: "John [her husband] and I discussed on the weakness of everyone. The King, the Court, the city wants to get rid of the Rifles and yet do not dare to. How Laughable." 114/

The veto power used by Kalakaua was questioned by the legislature and a resolution was passed on December 12, 1887, that circumvented the king's vetoes. The resolution stated that the enactments "do go upon their usual and ordinary course, becoming law at the expiration of ten days from the date of presentation to the king." 115/ Thus, the five bills became laws. However, Kalakaua took his case to the Hawaiian Supreme Court and in a test case heard on February 2, 1888, by a decision of 4-to-l the judges sustained the king's right to veto legislative acts "in pursuance of the power given him by the Constitution," which is "a personal one and does not require the advice and consent of the Cabinet." 116/

During this same period, suggestions arose that Kalakaua should abdicate in favor of his sister, Princess Liliuokalani, because of the sharp conflict between Kalakaua and his cabinet. The suggestion recurred, according to American Minister Merrill, in conversations the latter had with Ministers L. A. Thurston and Brown. Merrill reported to Bayard that Minister Brown had told him "the subject of the abdication of the King in favor of H.R.H. Princess Liliuokalani...was spoken of..." 117/ On December 20 and 23, 1887, Princess Liliuokalani was asked about the subject of taking the throne by members of the cabinet. Her answer to them, which she wrote in her diary was: "if it was particularly necessary if the King abdicated I would—if [the King] was doing wrong—I would but not till then. In the evening went and told the King." 118/

Accounts of this whole incident vary. According to Kuykendall:

The account of this episode by Liliuokalani in her book Hawaii's Story by Hawaii's Queen, pp. 186-189, is obviously quite inaccurate. The account by Thurston in his
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