... Because apparently, Hawaii is not a state.
Two weeks after declaring war on Spain, US Rep. Francis Newlands (D-Nevada) submitted a resolution calling for the annexation of Hawaii by the United States. Influential military figures like Rear Admiral Alfred T. Mahan and General John Schofield testified that the possession of Hawaii by the United States was of "paramount importance." It was in this atmosphere that the Newlands Resolution moved from the House to the Senate and became a joint resolution which President McKinley signed, claiming to have successfully annexed the Hawaiian Islands.Oh, great. This ought to get the birthers riled up.
On August 12, 1898, the Hawaiian flag was lowered, the American flag raised, and the Territory of Hawaii formally declared.
But... a Congressional joint resolution is American legislation restricted to the boundaries of the United States. The key to Hawaii's legal status... remains with the 1893 executive agreement between two heads of state: President Grover Cleveland and Queen Liliuokalani.
Unlike other land acquisitions made by cession and voluntary treaties with the French, Spanish, British, Russia and the 1848 Guadalupe Hidalgo Treaty that ended the Mexican-American war... there is no treaty of cession, and thus no ceded lands, by then-acting head of state Queen Liliuokalani.