Native Hawaiian activists march during an independence protest in Honolulu as the island commemorates the 50th anniversary of statehood in 2009. The Akaka bill to treat Native Hawaiians the same as other indigenous groups in the U.S. was first introduced in 2000. Approved by the House three times, the measure never passed the Senate. (Associated Press photographs)

Native Hawaiian activists march during an independence protest in Honolulu as the island commemorates the 50th anniversary of statehood in 2009. The Akaka bill to treat Native Hawaiians the same as other indigenous groups in the U.S. was first introduced in 2000. Approved by the House three times, the measure never passed the Senate. (Associated Press photographs)