Brian Schatz

Brian Emanuel Schatz (/ʃɑːts/; born October 20, 1972) is an American politician serving as the senior United States Senator from Hawaii, a seat he has held since 2012. Schatz was appointed by Governor Neil Abercrombie to replace Senator Daniel Inouye after his death.

Schatz served in the Hawaii House of Representatives from 1998 to 2006, where he represented the 25th Legislative District and was chairman of the Democratic Party of Hawaii from 2008 to 2010. He also worked as chief executive officer of Helping Hands Hawaii, an Oahu nonprofit social service agency, until he resigned to run for Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii in the 2010 gubernatorial election as the running mate of Neil Abercrombie.[1] He served as lieutenant governor until December 26, 2012, when Abercrombie appointed Schatz to serve out the rest of Daniel Inouye's U.S. Senate term after his death.[2] Upon his swearing-in, Schatz was the youngest U.S. Senator in the 112th Congress. Schatz won the 2014 special election to complete the remainder of Inouye's Senate term, and was reelected in 2016 for a full six-year term, defeating Republican John Carroll.

Brian Schatz
Brian Schatz, official portrait, 113th Congress 2
United States Senator
from Hawaii
Assumed office
December 26, 2012
Serving with Mazie Hirono
Preceded byDaniel Inouye
11th Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii
In office
December 6, 2010 – December 26, 2012
GovernorNeil Abercrombie
Preceded byDuke Aiona
Succeeded byShan Tsutsui
Chair of the Hawaii Democratic Party
In office
May 2008 – January 2010
Preceded byJeani Withington
Succeeded byDante Carpenter
Member of the Hawaii House of Representatives
from the 25th district
In office
November 3, 2002 – November 7, 2006
Preceded byKenneth Hiraki
Succeeded byDella Au Belatti
Member of the Hawaii House of Representatives
from the 24th district
In office
November 3, 1998 – November 3, 2002
Preceded bySam Aiona
Succeeded byKirk Caldwell
Personal details
Brian Emanuel Schatz

October 20, 1972 (age 46)
Ann Arbor, Michigan, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Linda Kwok Kai Yun
EducationPomona College (BA)
Brian Schatz's signature
WebsiteSenate website

Early life

Brian Schatz was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, along with an identical twin brother, Steve. He is the son of Barbara Jane (née Binder) and Irwin Jacob Schatz, a cardiologist and native of Saint Boniface, Manitoba.[3][4]

Schatz is Jewish. JStreetPAC, which supported him, called him a "strong voice for the pro-Israel, pro-peace movement," and a supporter of the Iran nuclear agreement.[5][6]

Schatz's father was the first to complain about the ethics of the Tuskegee syphilis experiment, in a 1965 letter. The letter was ignored until the problem finally came to public attention in 1972. Irwin Schatz wrote that he was "astounded" that "physicians allow patients with potentially fatal disease to remain untreated when effective therapy is available." Brian Schatz said that his father didn't talk about the letter, but did influence him to pursue the public good.[7][8]

When Schatz and his brother were two years old the family moved to Hawaii[9] where Schatz later graduated from Punahou School.[10][11] Schatz enrolled at Pomona College in Claremont, California; he spent a term studying in Kenya as part of the International Training Program.[12] As a US Senator, Schatz is one of Pomona’s most high-profile alumni and was invited by Pomona to be the commencement speaker for the college’s Class of 2017.[13] After graduating in 1994 with a B.A. in philosophy, he returned to Hawaii, where he taught at Punahou before taking other jobs in the nonprofit sector. Schatz for a short while was a member of the Green Party in his early life.[14]

Early career

He became active in the community through his involvement in Youth for Environmental Services in the 1980s. He served as CEO of Helping Hands Hawaii and director of the Makiki Community Library and of the Center for a Sustainable Future. In March 2010, Schatz stepped down from Helping Hands to run for lieutenant governor.[15]

Hawaii House of Representatives (1998–2006)


In 1998, Schatz, a Democrat, challenged the incumbent State Representative of the 24th District of the Hawaii House of Representatives, Republican Sam Aiona, and won, 53%–47%.[16] In the 2000 rematch he was reelected, 57%–43%.[17]

In 2002 he ran in the newly redrawn 25th House district, and defeated Republican Bill Hols, 69%–31%.[18] In 2004 he defeated Republican Tracy Okubo, 64%–36%.[19] The 25th district includes Makiki and Tantalus on Oahu.

Subsequent political career (2006–10)

2006 congressional election

Schatz ran for Hawaii's 2nd congressional district, vacated by Ed Case, who had decided to run for the U.S. Senate against incumbent Daniel Akaka. The Democratic primary featured 10 candidates, seven of whom served in the Hawaii Legislature. Mazie Hirono, the Lieutenant Governor, was the only one who had held statewide office and thus enjoyed the most name recognition. She also raised more money than any other candidate in the race, mostly because of the endorsement of EMILY's List,[20] and gave her campaign a personal loan of $100,000. Still, she won with just 22% of the vote, just 845 votes ahead of State Senator Colleen Hanabusa. Schatz ranked sixth with 7% of the vote, behind Hirono and four state senators.[21][22]

Support for Obama

One of the earliest supporters of Barack Obama for president, Schatz founded a group with other Hawaii Democrats in December 2006 to urge Obama to run. Schatz said, "For the last six years we've been governed by fear, fear of terrorists, fear of other countries, even fear of the other party...everyone is governing by fear and Barack Obama changes all of that. He wants to govern the United States by hope."[23] In 2008 Schatz worked as spokesman for Obama's campaign in Hawaii.[24]

State Chairman

In April 2008 Schatz began running for the position of chairman of the Democratic Party of Hawaii,[25] and won the job at the state convention the following month. During his tenure, the Democrats increased the number of active party members and delivered Obama's best performance of any state in the country. Hawaii native Obama won the state with 73% of the vote; just 55% of the state voted for Democratic nominee John Kerry in 2004. Schatz stepped down as party chairman on January 9, 2010.[26]

Lieutenant Governor (2010–12)

2010 election

Abercrombie and Schatz 2010
Schatz, his wife, Linda Kwok Kai Yun Schatz; incoming Hawaii First Lady Nancie Caraway; and Governor-elect Neil Abercrombie on Election Day 2010.

On January 10, 2010, Schatz announced his candidacy for lieutenant governor of Hawaii.[27] Schatz's campaign priorities included the creation of clean-energy jobs, public education, and technological improvements in the public sector. He also declared his support for Hawaii House Bill 444,[28] which would have allowed same-sex civil unions in Hawaii had it not been vetoed by term-limited Republican Governor Linda Lingle.[29] A number of Hawaii labor unions endorsed Schatz for lieutenant governor in the Democratic primary election, held statewide on September 18, 2010.[30] Schatz won the nomination with 34.8% of the vote, and thus became Abercrombie's running mate in the November general election.


On December 6, 2010, Schatz was inaugurated as Hawaii's 11th lieutenant governor alongside Abercrombie, who had defeated Republican incumbent Lieutenant Governor Duke Aiona in the gubernatorial election. Hawaii Supreme Court Associate Justice James Duffy administered the oath of office at the Coronation Pavilion on the grounds of ʻIolani Palace.

U.S. Senate (2012–present)


Shortly before Senator Daniel Inouye died on December 17, 2012,[31] he dictated a letter to Governor Neil Abercrombie asking that U.S. Representative Colleen Hanabusa be appointed to finish out his term.[32][33]

Hawaii law on interim appointments to the U.S. Senate requires the governor to choose from three candidates selected by the party of the previous officeholder. On December 26, 2012, the Hawaii Democratic Party nominated Schatz, Hanabusa, and Esther Kia'aina, the deputy director of the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources. The same day, Abercrombie appointed Schatz, despite Inouye's request.[34] Later that night, Schatz accompanied President Barack Obama back to Washington, D.C. on Air Force One.[35] On December 27 Schatz was sworn in as a senator by Vice President Joe Biden.

Schatz's appointment to Inouye's seat on December 27, 2012, made him the senior senator from Hawaii (Mazie Hirono, who had been elected that November to replace retiring Sen. Daniel Akaka, took office one week later on January 3, 2013). He is only the sixth person to represent Hawaii in the U.S. Senate, and the first non-Asian American to serve since Oren E. Long.

2014 election

Schatz announced his intention to run for election in the special election to be held in 2014 for a two years term. In April 2013 Hanabusa announced she would challenge Schatz in the primary. The core of the Schatz campaign was climate change and renewable energy.[36] Schatz defeated Hanabusa by 1,782 votes (0.75%)[37] in a primary delayed in two precincts by Hurricane Iselle.[38]

As expected in heavily Democratic Hawaii, Schatz went on to win the general election, defeating Republican Campbell Cavasso with about 70% of the vote.[39]

2016 election

In 2016, Schatz ran for and easily won his first full six-year senate term against only nominal opposition.[40]

According to New York magazine, Schatz had a low-profile but highly influential effect on the Democratic primary for the 2020 presidential election by pushing fellow Democrats to commit to progressive positions on issues such as healthcare, climate, college affordability and Social Security.[41]

Committee assignments (116th Congress)

Leadership positions

  • Chief Deputy Whip[42][43]
  • Co-chair, Senate Climate Change Task Force[44]
  • Chair, Senate Democratic Special Committee on the Climate Crisis[45]

Caucus memberships

Political positions

According to New York magazine, Schatz is a progressive but not a "Sanders-style bomb-thrower."[41] He was characterized as a low-profile but a highly influential Senator in pushing fellow Democrats to adopt progressive policy positions.[41]

Gun law

As of 2010, the National Rifle Association had given Schatz a "C" rating for his mixed voting record regarding gun law.[48]

He participated in the Chris Murphy gun control filibuster in 2016.[49] Schatz expressed disappointment, along with fellow Hawaii senator Mazie Hirono, when both the Democrat proposed Feinstein Amendment (making the sale of firearms to individuals on the terrorist watchlist illegal) and the Republican supported background check changes and gun sale alert system did not pass the Senate. He stated:[50]

More than 90% of Americans demand we take action on gun violence, but again Senate Republicans refuse to act. It’s unacceptable. Right now, known terrorists are banned from getting on an airplane, but they are still allowed to buy military-style weapons. It is absolutely insane. After one of the most horrific mass shootings in our history, we saw people across the country courageously stand up against gun violence and hatred. When will Republicans in Congress finally do the same?

In response to the 2017 Las Vegas shooting Schatz stated, "We can do more than lower the flag to half-mast. We can take a stand against gun violence by passing common-sense gun safety laws."[51]


Schatz supports same-sex marriage.[52] He sponsored legislation in 2015 to allow married gay couples to have equal access to the veterans benefits and Social Security they have earned.[53]

Privacy rights

In one of his first votes in the U.S. Senate, he voted against renewing the FISA Amendments Act Reauthorization Act of 2012.[54] On April 17, 2013, he voted to expand background checks for gun purchases.[55]

Schatz voted for the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act, a bill opposed by many civil liberties groups.[56][57]


In March 2014, Schatz was a lead organizer of an overnight talkathon devoted to discussing climate change. The gathering of over two dozen Senate Democrats took place on the Senate floor. The League of Conservation Voters supported the talkathon and ran campaign ads on Schatz's behalf.[58] He has received a perfect score from the League of Conservation Voters.[59]


To encourage tourism in West Hawaii, Schatz proposed that customs begin in Japan so that planes can arrive in West Hawaii as domestic flights.[60]

Foreign policy

Schatz criticized China's island-building activities, saying that "China’s outsized claim to the entire South China Sea has no basis in international law."[61]

In October 2017, Schatz condemned the genocide of the Rohingya Muslim minority in Myanmar and called for a stronger response to the crisis.[62]

Schatz spearheaded a nonbinding resolution in July 2018 "warning President Trump not to let the Russian government question diplomats and other officials". The resolution states the United States "should refuse to make available any current or former diplomat, civil servant, political appointee, law enforcement official or member of the Armed Forces of the United States for questioning by the government of Vladimir Putin". It passed 98-0.[63]

Health care

Schatz supports Sen. Bernie Sanders' single-payer proposal, but also introduced his own proposal which would allow states to expand Medicaid into a universal system.[64][65]


In April 2019, Schatz was one of forty-one senators to sign a bipartisan letter to the housing subcommittee praising the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development's Section 4 Capacity Building program as authorizing "HUD to partner with national nonprofit community development organizations to provide education, training, and financial support to local community development corporations (CDCs) across the country" and expressing disappointment that President Trump's budget "has slated this program for elimination after decades of successful economic and community development." The senators wrote of their hope that the subcommittee would support continued funding for Section 4 in Fiscal Year 2020.[66]

Personal life

Schatz is married to Linda Kwok Kai Yun. They have two children. Brian's identical twin brother, Steve, runs the Hawaii Department of Education's Office of Strategic Reform.[67]

Electoral history

Democratic primary results[68]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Brian Schatz 83,431 34.8
Democratic Robert Bunda 45,973 19.2
Democratic Norman Sakamoto 44,462 18.5
Democratic Gary Hooser 22,878 9.5
Democratic Lyla Berg 20,161 8.4
Democratic Jon Riki Karamatsu 6,746 2.8
Democratic Steve Hirakami 2,695 1.1
Total votes 226,346 100
Hawaii gubernatorial election, 2010[69]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Neil Abercrombie / Brian Schatz 222,724 57.8%
Republican Duke Aiona / Lynn Finnegan 157,311 40.8%
Free Energy Party Daniel Cunningham / Deborah Spence 1,265 .3%
Non-partisan Tom Pollard / Leonard Kama 1,263 .3%
Turnout 380,035 55.7%
Democratic gain from Republican
Democratic primary results[70]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Brian Schatz (incumbent) 115,445 48.5%
Democratic Colleen Hanabusa 113,663 47.7%
Democratic Brian Evans 4,842 2.0%
Democratic Blank vote 3,842 1.6%
Democratic Over vote 150 0.2%
Total votes 237,942 100.0%
United States Senate special election in Hawaii, 2014[71]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Brian Schatz (incumbent) 246,827 69.78% -5.03%
Republican Campbell Cavasso 98,006 27.70% +6.13%
Libertarian Michael Kokoski 8,941 2.52% +1.72%
Total votes 353,774 100.0% N/A
Democratic hold
U.S. Senate Election Hawaii 2016 - Democratic primary election[72][73][74]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Brian Schatz (Incumbent) 162,891 86.17%
Democratic Makani Christensen 11,898 6.29%
Democratic Miles Shiratori 8,620 4.56%
Democratic Arturo Reyes 3,819 2.02%
Democratic Tutz Honeychurch 1,815 0.96%
Total votes 189,043 100.00%
U.S. Senate Election Hawaii 2016[75]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Brian Schatz (Incumbent) 306,604 70.1% N/A
Republican John Carroll 92,653 21.2% N/A
Constitution Joy Allison 9,103 2.1% N/A
Libertarian Michael Kokowski 6,809 1.6% N/A
Independent John Giuffre 1,393 0.3%
Blank votes 20,763 4.7%
Over votes 339 0.0%
Majority 213,951 48.88%
Total votes 437,664 100.0%
Democratic hold Swing


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External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Duke Aiona
Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii
Succeeded by
Shan Tsutsui
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
Dan Inouye
U.S. Senator (Class 3) from Hawaii
Served alongside: Daniel Akaka, Mazie Hirono
Honorary titles
Preceded by
Mike Lee
Baby of the Senate
Succeeded by
Chris Murphy
Party political offices
Preceded by
Malama Solomon
Democratic nominee for Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii
Succeeded by
Shan Tsutsui
Preceded by
Dan Inouye
Democratic nominee for U.S. Senator from Hawaii
(Class 3)

2014, 2016
Most recent
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Mike Lee
United States Senators by seniority
Succeeded by
Tim Scott
2010 Hawaii gubernatorial election

The 2010 Hawaii gubernatorial election was held on November 2, 2010 to elect the next Governor and Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii. The winning candidates served a four-year term from 2010 to 2014. Incumbent Republican Governor Linda Lingle was term-limited in 2010 and not eligible to run for re-election. Former congressman Neil Abercrombie was declared the winner, defeating lieutenant governor Duke Aiona. Abercrombie was sworn in as the state's seventh (and its fifth Democratic) Governor on December 6, 2010.

The winners of the 2010 lieutenant governor primary election became the running mates of the 2010 gubernatorial nominees.

2014 United States Senate special election in Hawaii

The 2014 United States Senate election in Hawaii took place on November 4, 2014, the general Election Day in the United States, concurrently with other elections to the United States Senate in other states as well as elections to the United States House of Representatives and various state and local elections.

Incumbent Democratic Senator Brian Schatz was appointed to the office in December 2012, following the death of longtime senator Daniel Inouye. The special election determined who would serve the remainder of Inouye's term, which ended on January 3, 2017.

The Hawaii primary elections took place on August 9, 2014, but the Democratic primary remained unresolved until August 15 due to areas affected by damage from Tropical Storm Iselle. Schatz narrowly fended off a primary challenge from U.S. Representative Colleen Hanabusa and then went on to defeat the Republican nominee, former State Representative Campbell Cavasso, in a landslide.

2016 United States Senate election in Hawaii

The 2016 United States Senate election in Hawaii was held November 8, 2016, concurrently with the 2016 U.S. presidential election as well as other elections to the United States Senate and House of Representatives and various state and local elections. The primaries were held August 13.

Incumbent Democratic U.S. Senator Brian Schatz won reelection to his first full term in office, defeating former state legislator John Carroll.

Campbell Cavasso

Campbell "Cam" Cavasso (born October 14, 1950), is an American politician, businessman and member of the Republican Party. He served three consecutive terms in the Hawaii House of Representatives from January 1985 to January 1991, representing House District 51 in Windward Oahu. He ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination for Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii in 2002 and was the Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate in 2004 and 2010, losing on both occasions to Democratic incumbent Daniel Inouye. He was also the Republican nominee for the same seat in a 2014 special election, losing to Democrat Brian Schatz, who was appointed to the seat in 2012 after Inouye died. Cavasso was the 2018 Republican nominee for Hawaii's 1st congressional district and lost to Democrat Ed Case.

Colleen Hanabusa

Colleen Wakako Hanabusa (born May 4, 1951) is an American politician who served as the U.S. Representative from Hawaii's 1st congressional district from 2011 to 2015 and again from 2016 to 2019. She is a member of the Democratic Party and ran for her party's nomination for governor of Hawaii in 2018, challenging and losing to incumbent Governor and fellow Democrat David Ige.

Before her election to the United States House of Representatives, Hanabusa was a member of the Hawaii Senate. She served as the Senate Majority Leader before being elected Hawaii's first female president of the state senate in 2007. On August 24, 2011, she announced her intention to run for reelection to Congress.On December 17, 2012, after the death of Senator Daniel Inouye of Hawaii, it was announced that Inouye had sent a letter shortly before his death to Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie, stating his desire that Hanabusa be appointed to the seat. Abercrombie decided against appointing Hanabusa and selected Lieutenant Governor Brian Schatz instead. Hanabusa challenged Schatz in the Democratic primary for the 2014 special election, but narrowly lost.In 2016 Hanabusa announced her intention to run in the 1st congressional district special election to fill the remaining term of Representative Mark Takai, who died in July 2016, and she won the Democratic primary for the race on August 13. Hanabusa also won the election on November 8, 2016, and was sworn in on November 14.In 2017 Hanabusa announced her decision to run for governor of Hawaii in 2018 rather than reelection to the House. She lost to incumbent Democratic Governor David Ige in the primary. Ige was subsequently reelected to a second term.

Duke Aiona

James R. "Duke" Aiona Jr. (born June 8, 1955) is an American politician and jurist who served as the tenth lieutenant governor of Hawaii from 2002 to 2010. A Republican, he also served both as an attorney and a judge for the state prior to becoming lieutenant governor.

Aiona was the Republican nominee for Governor of Hawaii in the 2010 election, but was defeated by Democrat Neil Abercrombie in the general election. He was the Republican nominee once again in the 2014 election, but lost to Democrat David Ige.

Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii

The Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii (Hawaiian: Hope kiaʻāina o Hawaiʻi) is the assistant chief executive of the U.S. state of Hawaii and its various agencies and departments, as provided in the Article V, Sections 2 though 6 of the Constitution of Hawaii. Elected by popular suffrage of residents of the state on the same ticket as the Governor of Hawaii, the officeholder is concurrently the Secretary of State of Hawaii.

The officeholder becomes Governor of Hawaii in an acting capacity upon an absence of the person occupying the office from the state or if the person becomes disabled from duty. Historically, Hawaii Lieutenant Governors were members of either the Hawaii Democratic Party or Hawaii Republican Party. Three have gone on to become Governor of Hawaii: George Ariyoshi, Ben Cayetano and John D. Waihee III.

List of United States senators from Hawaii

Hawaii was admitted to the Union on August 21, 1959 and elects U.S. senators to Classes 1 and 3. Seven people including only one Republican have served as a U.S. senator from Hawaii. The state's current U.S. senators are Democrats Brian Schatz and Mazie Hirono. Hawaii's Class 1 seat is the only in the United States that has always been held by an ethnic minority.

Lyla Berg

Lyla Berg (born March 15, 1951) is a Hawaiian Democratic politician. She was first elected to the Hawaii House of Representatives in 2004 representing the Kāhala area of Honolulu on Oahu. Berg was a Democratic candidate for Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii in the 2010 election.

She was attacked for having sponsored a resolution to designate an Islam Day in 2009; critics claimed that according to the Julian Calendar, the holiday celebrated the September 11 attacks.

She lost in the primary to Brian Schatz.

Mazie Hirono

Mazie Keiko Hirono (; Japanese name: 広野 慶子, Hirono Keiko; born November 3, 1947) is a Japanese-born American politician serving since 2013 as the junior United States Senator from Hawaii. She is a member of the Democratic Party. Hirono served as a member of the Hawaii House of Representatives from 1981 to 1995 and as Hawaii's ninth lieutenant governor from 1994 to 2002, under Ben Cayetano. The Democratic nominee for governor of Hawaii in 2002, Hirono was defeated by Republican Linda Lingle. From 2007 to 2013, she served as a member of the United States House of Representatives for Hawaii's 2nd congressional district.

Hirono is the first elected female senator from Hawaii, the first Asian-American woman elected to the Senate, the first U.S. senator born in Japan, and the nation's first Buddhist senator. She considers herself a non-practicing Buddhist and is often cited with Hank Johnson as the first Buddhist to serve in the United States Congress. She is the third woman to be elected to Congress from Hawaii (after Patsy Mink and Pat Saiki). In 2012, Hirono was the Democratic nominee for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by the retirement of Daniel Akaka. Hirono won the election, defeating Lingle in landslide, 63% to 37%. She was sworn in on January 3, 2013, by Vice President Joe Biden. Hirono was the only person of Asian ancestry serving in the U.S. Senate from 2013 until 2017, when senators Tammy Duckworth and Kamala Harris were sworn in, representing Illinois and California, respectively. Although Brian Schatz joined the Senate a week before Hirono, following the death of Daniel Inouye, making him Hawaii's senior senator, her six years in the House of Representatives makes her the dean, or longest-serving member overall, of Hawaii's congressional delegation.

Native Language Immersion Student Achievement Act

The Native Language Immersion Student Achievement Act, S. 1948 was introduced on Jan 16, 2014. Its sponsor is Sen. Jon Tester [D-MT]. Cosponsors were Max Baucus [D-MT], Mark Begich [D-AK], Tim Johnson [D-SD], Brian Schatz [D-HI], Tom Udall [D-NM], and Lisa Murkowski [R-AK]. The legislation "would establish a grant program to fund Native language educational programs."The bill "cites reports from the Bureau of Indian Affairs and educational institutions 'that use primarily Native American languages to deliver education' and 'have indicated that students from these schools have generally had high school graduation and college attendance rates above the norm for their peers.'"The bill "would amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 to provide increased federal financial support to Native American language programs at American Indian-focused schools." In 2015, the bill would provide $5 million in funding.Support among Native Americans includes Oglala Sioux Tribal president Bryan Brewer and Rosebud Sioux Tribal president Cyril Scott. Congressional supporters include Senator John Walsh (D-MT).

Neil Abercrombie

Neil Abercrombie (born June 26, 1938) is an American politician who served as the seventh governor of Hawaii from 2010 to 2014. He is a member of the Democratic Party.

Born in Buffalo, New York, Abercrombie is a graduate of Union College and the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa. He began his political career in 1975, winning a seat in the Hawaii House of Representatives. He served in the Hawaii House until 1979, when he was elected to the Hawaii State Senate. Upon the resignation of Cecil Heftel, who resigned from the U.S. House of Representatives to run for governor, Abercrombie was elected to his vacant seat in a special election in 1986, but lost the Democratic primary for a full term on the same day. Abercrombie served the remainder of Heftel's term until January 1987. He served on the Honolulu City Council from 1988 to 1990 before returning to Congress in 1991. Abercrombie served nine consecutive terms in the House from 1993 to 2010, representing Hawaii's 1st congressional district, consisting of urban Honolulu.

With incumbent Governor Linda Lingle prevented by term limits from running for reelection, Abercrombie declared his candidacy for governor in March 2009. In September 2010 he won the five-candidate Democratic primary with 59% of the vote. Abercrombie went on to face Republican nominee, Lieutenant Governor Duke Aiona, in the general election.

On November 2, 2010, Abercrombie and running mate Brian Schatz defeated Aiona with 57% of the vote. Abercrombie was sworn into office on December 6, 2010. Issues he faced during his tenure included the aftermath of the great recession and restructuring labor union pensions. In 2014, he was defeated in the Democratic primary by state senator David Ige.

Oren E. Long

Oren Ethelbirt Long (March 4, 1889 – May 6, 1965) was an American politician who served as the tenth Territorial Governor of Hawaii from 1951 to 1953. A member of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, Long was appointed to the office after the term of Ingram Stainback. After statehood was achieved he served in the United States Senate, one of the first two, along with Hiram Fong, to represent Hawaii in that body. Long was the only non-Asian American U.S. Senator from Hawaii until the appointment of Brian Schatz to the position in 2012.

Politics of Hawaii

This only covers the history of the politics of the State of Hawaii. For information on the political history of the previous two forms of government, see Territory of Hawaii - Organic Act and Kingdom of Hawaii - Government.

The politics the U.S. state of Hawaii take place within the framework of a Democrat-dominated government.

Reward Work Act

The Reward Work Act of 2018 (S.2605 and HR 6096) is a proposed United States Act of Congress to ban unjustified stock buy-backs, and to require that every listed company enable employees to elect one-third of the board of directors. The Bill was sponsored initially by Senators Tammy Baldwin, Elizabeth Warren and Brian Schatz in March 2018, joined in April 2018 by Kirsten Gillibrand, and in November 2018 by Bernie Sanders. It was sponsored in the House of Representatives in June 2018 by Keith Ellison and Ro Khanna.

Robert Bunda

Robert "Bobby" Bunda (born April 25, 1947) is a former Democratic member of the Hawaii Senate, representing the 22nd District from 1994 through 2010, when he resigned his position in an unsuccessful bid for Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii. Previously he was a member of the Hawaii House of Representatives from 1983 through 1994.

He is the first Filipino American to attain the presidency of any state legislature in the United States.

He attended Ludwigsburg American High School in Stuttgart, Germany, Leilehua High School, Texas Wesleyan College where he earned his Bachelor of Science in 1974, and the University of Dallas for his graduate studies.

The 2009 Achievement Award for Public Affairs was conferred to Bunda by Filipinas Magazine. The magazine, self-described as "the Magazine for Filipinos Worldwide" named Bunda as among the "brightest lights" of the Filipino community.Bunda announced on October 13, 2009, that he had entered the 2010 race for Lieutenant Governor for the State of Hawaiʻi. Bunda subsequently lost the election to former state legislator and state party chairman Brian Schatz.

Shan Tsutsui

Shan S. Tsutsui (born August 9, 1971) is an American politician who was the 12th lieutenant governor of Hawaii from 2012 to 2018. A member of the Democratic Party, he was previously a member of the Hawaii Senate from 2003 to 2012, and he served as President of the Senate from 2010 to 2012. On January 29, 2018, Tsutsui announced his resignation, effective January 31.

United States Senate Committee on Appropriations

The United States Senate Committee on Appropriations is a standing committee of the United States Senate. It has jurisdiction over all discretionary spending legislation in the Senate.

The Senate Appropriations Committee is the largest committee in the U.S. Senate, with 31 members in the 115th Congress. Its role is defined by the U.S. Constitution, which requires "appropriations made by law" prior to the expenditure of any money from the Treasury, and is therefore, one of the most powerful committees in the Senate.[1] The committee was first organized on March 6, 1867, when power over appropriations was taken out of the hands of the Finance Committee.[2]The chairman of the Appropriations Committee has enormous power to bring home special projects (sometimes referred to as "pork barrel spending") for his or her state as well as having the final say on other senators' appropriation requests.[3] For example, in fiscal year 2005 per capita federal spending in Alaska, the home state of then-Chairman Ted Stevens, was $12,000, double the national average. Alaska has 11,772 special earmarked projects for a combined cost of $15,780,623,000. This represents about four percent of the overall spending in the $388 billion Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2005 passed by Congress.[4]Because of the power of this committee and the fact that senators represent entire states, not just parts of states, it is considered extremely difficult to unseat a member of this committee at an election - especially if he or she is a subcommittee chair, or "Cardinal". Since 1990, four members of this committee have gone on to serve as Senate Majority Leader for at least one session of Congress: Tom Daschle (committee member August 12, 1991 - December 10, 1999; Senate Majority Leader January 3–20, 2001 and June 6, 2001 - January 3, 2003), Bill Frist (committee member April 17, 1995 - December 29, 2002; Senate Majority Leader January 3, 2003 - January 3, 2007), Harry Reid (committee member August 13, 1989 - December 23, 2006; subcommittee chair March 15, 1991 - December 24, 1994 and June 11, 2001 - December 22, 2002; Senate Majority Leader January 3, 2007 - January 3, 2015), Mitch McConnell (Senate Majority Leader January 3, 2015 – present).

United States congressional delegations from Hawaii

These are tables of congressional delegations from Hawaii to the United States Senate and United States House of Representatives.

Statewide political officials of Hawaii
U.S. Senators
State government
Supreme Court
(ordered by district)
Class 1
Class 3
Hawaii's delegation(s) to the 112th–present United States Congresses (ordered by seniority)
112th Senate: D. InouyeD. Akaka • B. Schatz House: M. HironoC. Hanabusa
113th Senate: B. Schatz • M. Hirono House: C. HanabusaT. Gabbard
114th Senate: B. Schatz • M. Hirono House: C. HanabusaT. GabbardM. Takai
115th Senate: B. Schatz • M. Hirono House: C. HanabusaT. Gabbard
116th Senate: B. Schatz • M. Hirono House: T. GabbardE. Case


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