Mazie Hirono

Mazie Keiko Hirono (/ˈmeɪzi hiˈroʊnoʊ/; 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[1][2] and is often cited with Hank Johnson as the first Buddhist to serve in the United States Congress.[3] 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.

Mazie Hirono
広野 慶子
Mazie Hirono, official portrait, 113th Congress
United States Senator
from Hawaii
Assumed office
January 3, 2013
Serving with Brian Schatz
Preceded byDaniel Akaka
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Hawaii's 2nd district
In office
January 3, 2007 – January 3, 2013
Preceded byEd Case
Succeeded byTulsi Gabbard
9th Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii
In office
December 2, 1994 – December 2, 2002
GovernorBen Cayetano
Preceded byBen Cayetano
Succeeded byDuke Aiona
Member of the Hawaii House of Representatives
In office
January 3, 1981 – December 2, 1994
Preceded byClifford Uwaine
David Hagino
Succeeded byTerry Yoshinaga
Constituency12th district (1981–83)
20th district (1983–1985)
32nd district (1985–1993)
22nd district (1993–1994)
Personal details
Mazie Keiko Hirono

November 3, 1947 (age 71)
Koori, Japan
Political partyDemocratic
Leighton Kim Oshima (m. 1987)
EducationUniversity of Hawaii at Manoa (BA)
Georgetown University (JD)
Mazie Hirono's signature
WebsiteSenate website

Early life and education

Hirono was born on November 3, 1947, in Fukushima Prefecture, Japan. Her mother was an American citizen. At the age of 16, her maternal grandfather, Satō Hiroshi, immigrated to Hawaii to work on sugar plantations in Hawaii; Hirono's grandmother, Tari Shinoki, was a picture bride.[4] After finding plantation work difficult, they opened a bathhouse on River Street in Honolulu in 1928 and saved their money. The couple had a daughter, Sato Laura Chie, in 1924 and a son, Akira. In 1939 Tari returned to Japan with their son and daughter; Hiroshi remained behind to run the bathhouse for two more years before rejoining his family in 1941. Though Laura felt out of place in Japan, in 1946, aged 22, she married a veterinarian, Hirono Matabe, and moved with her husband to southern Fukushima. The couple had three children, Roy, Mazie and Wayne; Mazie was the middle child and only surviving daughter.[5]

Hirono's father was a compulsive gambler and alcoholic who pawned his wife's possessions for gambling money.[5] Treated "like a slave" by her in-laws, Hirono said,[5] in 1951 Laura left her abusive marriage. The deciding moment for her had come after her brother, Akira, who had returned to Hawaii after the war, had sent some money for a school uniform for Laura's son Wayne, but her husband had taken it to buy an overcoat.[4] As Laura later recounted, "My brother sent money to buy a school uniform for my son. My husband took the money, went to town and never came back home. It was getting closer to the start of school, so I went to look for him. I found out he had ordered an overcoat for himself with the money. He didn't need an overcoat in the spring. That's when I made up my mind to leave." After telling her in-laws she was going to take her elder son and Hirono to school in her hometown, Laura left the house, never to return. Selling her clothes for the rail fare, she returned to her parents' house. Laura said, "My husband never came around once; my parents were supportive and took all of us in. My mother gave us money. I guess it all boils down to love."

Hirono's grandparents decided to return to Hawaii, but as Japanese citizens without professional backgrounds, they could only immigrate under a quota system; as Laura had citizenship, she decided to return first. As Wayne was only three, Laura left him with her parents and returned to Hawaii with Mazie and Roy in March 1955, sending for Wayne and her parents in 1957.[4]

"She determined that she had to get away, and it wasn't enough to even be living in the same country—she wanted to put thousands of miles between them," Hirono said. "That took a lot of courage. I always tell my mom there is nothing I can do (hard as it is to be in politics, to be in public life, that I think is) harder than what she did."[4][5]

After first living with her uncle Akira, Mazie, Roy and her mother moved into a rooming house on Kewalo Street in Honolulu. "The first place had one room, one table, three chairs and one bed," Laura said. "Mazie and Roy slept on the bed. I slept on the floor with a futon. The landlady was so nice. The rent was $35, but she charged us less because I didn't have a job."[4] Laura found work for Hawaii Hochi as a typesetter and also worked three nights a week for a catering company. Hirono herself worked in the school cafeteria and had a paper route.[6]

Though money was tight and the family was forced to move often, Laura kept them together. Hirono recalled that she and her brother used to get a dime once or twice a week from their mother. "We both had baseball piggy banks. My older brother spent all his dimes but I saved mine. But one day I came home and the dimes were gone. My mother had to use it to buy food."

Hirono never saw her father again, and he has since died.[7] Laura became a newspaper proofreader in 1961 and retired from the Hawaii Newspaper Agency in 1986; Roy became a Hawaiian Electric supervisor. Wayne drowned in 1978, aged 26. Her grandfather, Hiroshi, died in 1989, and her grandmother Tari died in 2000 at age 99.[4][8]

Raised in Honolulu, Hirono became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1959, the year Hawaii became a state.[9] She attended Kaʻahumanu Elementary and Koko Head Elementary Schools. She later graduated from Kaimuki High School, which at the time of her attendance had a predominantly Japanese American student body. Hirono then enrolled at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, graduating Phi Beta Kappa with a B.A. in psychology in 1970.[10] She left Hawaii to attend Georgetown University Law Center, where she obtained her J.D. degree in 1978. Hirono returned to Honolulu, where she practiced law.[11]

Hawaii House of Representatives (1981–1994)


In 1980 Hirono was elected to Hawaii's 12th House District in a multi-member district with Democratic State Representative David Hagino.[12] Hawaii eliminated MMDs, and after redistricting she ran for Hawaii's 20th House District and won.[13] After redistricting again in 1984, she ran for the newly redrawn Hawaii's 32nd House District and won.[14] In 1992, after redistricting, she ran in the newly redrawn Hawaii's 22nd House District. She won the three-candidate Democratic primary with 91% of the vote.[15] She won the general election and served only one term in the 22nd district before retiring in 1994 to run for statewide office.[16]


From 1980 to 1994 Hirono served in the Hawaii House of Representatives, passing more than 120 laws. She was honored by a coalition of leaseholders as Legislator of the Year in 1984.

Committee assignments

From 1987 to 1992 she was Chair of the Consumer Protection and Commerce Committee.

Lieutenant Governor (1994–2002)



Hirono ran for lieutenant governor of Hawaii and won the Democratic primary, defeating fellow State Representative Jackie Young 65%–26%.[17] In the general election she defeated three other candidates: Danny Kaniela Kaleikini (Best Party), State Representative Fred Hemmings (Republican Party), and Jack Morse (Green Party), 37%–31%–29%–4%.[18]


She ran for reelection in 1998. She was challenged in the primary by Nancy L. Cook and defeated her, 89%–11%.[19] In the general election Hirono defeated Republican State Senator Stan Koki 50%–49%, a difference of 5,254 votes.[20]


In 1994 she joined the ticket of incumbent Lieutenant Governor Benjamin J. Cayetano and was consequently elected to a historic administration led by the first Filipino American governor and first Japanese immigrant lieutenant governor. During her tenure as lieutenant governor, Hirono was also president of the National Commission on Teaching, America's Future, as well as the Hawaii Policy Group. She also spearheaded the first-in-the-nation comprehensive Pre-Plus program, a precursor to universal preschool education in the United States.

2002 gubernatorial election

Hirono originally wanted to run for mayor of Honolulu in a potential 2002 special election created by the vacancy of incumbent Mayor Jeremy Harris, who was planning to resign in order to run for governor of Hawaii. But due to internal controversies, Harris dropped out of the gubernatorial election and remained mayor for another two years. Hirono switched races.

Hirono maneuvered to gain the support of potential Harris voters in her challenge against former State House Majority Leader Ed Case. Throughout the primary campaign, Hirono and Case polled almost equally. Hirono defeated Case in the September 21 Democratic primary, 41%–40%, a difference of 2,613 votes.[21][22][23]

Only a few weeks later, Republican nominee and Mayor of Maui Linda Lingle defeated Hirono 52%–47%. She became Hawaii's first female governor.[24][25]

U.S. House of Representatives (2007–2013)

Mazie Hirono, official 110th Congress photo
Congresswoman Hirono during the 110th congress



On September 23, Hirono ran for Hawaii's 2nd congressional district, being vacated by incumbent U.S. Congressman Ed Case. The Democratic primary was very competitive. There were ten candidates, seven of whom served in the Hawaii Legislature. Hirono's advantage was that she was the only candidate who had held statewide office and as a result had 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.[26] Hirono also lent her campaign $100,000. She won with a plurality of just 22% of the vote. State Senator Colleen Hanabusa ranked second with 21%, and was only 845 votes short of Hirono.[27][28]

In the general election Hirono defeated Republican State Senator Bob Hogue, 61%–39%.[29]


Hirono won reelection to a second term with 76% of the vote.[30] She outperformed presidential candidate Barack Obama, a native of Honolulu, by three points.


Hirono won reelection to a third term with 72% of the vote.[31]


In 2008 Hirono was named the national preschool advocacy organization Pre-K Now's "Pre-K Champion" for her efforts on behalf of pre-kindergarten legislation.[32]

Hirono co-sponsored and signed the Prevention First Act of 2007. This act was aimed towards increasing public access to contraception, as well as increasing government funding to support the use of contraception.[33] The act places an emphasis on informing and protecting women from unintended pregnancy.[33] On May 4, 2011, Hirono voted against the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, which would have prohibited federal health care program from covering abortion costs, with exceptions for life-threatening cases.[33]

In July 2011 Hirono voted for the Access to Birth Control Act, which mandates that pharmacies provide birth control to customers without undue delay.[33] The ABP Act also ensures that customers seeking birth control can obtain without being submitted to unwanted harassment or breaches in patient confidentiality.[33] Emily's List, a Democratic pro-choice action committee, pledged support to Hirono for her history of supporting contraceptive and abortion policies during her term.[33] The endorsement of Emily's List helped Hirono in her 2012 senatorial race, contributing $129,714 to her campaign.[34][35]

Committee assignments

Caucus memberships

U.S. Senate



On May 19, 2011, Hirono announced her candidacy for the U.S. Senate seat left open by Senator Daniel Akaka, who was retiring at the end of his term in 2012.[37] She won the Democratic primary election on August 11, 2012.[38] Hirono was endorsed as one of Democracy for America's Dean Dozen. The Republican nominee was former Hawaii Governor Linda Lingle. Hirono won the general election on November 6, 2012.[39] She is the first female senator from Hawaii, as well as the first Asian-born immigrant to be elected to the U.S. Senate.[40] She was a part of the first completely non-Christian Congressional delegation from the state, which continued until the election of Mark Takai (an Episcopalian) in 2014 as Representative of Hawaii's 1st Congressional District.[41]

In the 2012 campaign Hirono raised $5.2 million, with approximately 52% of that coming from large corporations. Lingle raised $5.5 million, with 74% coming from large corporations. Hirono ended up spending $5 million, to come up with a 63% win over her opponent, while Lingle spent $4.8 million.[42]


On November 6, 2018, Hirono won reelection with 71.2% of the vote, easily defeating Republican Ron Curtis.[43]


On December 12, 2012, the Senate Democratic Steering Committee announced that Hirono would serve on the Senate Judiciary Committee, giving her influence on matters ranging from approving nominations of federal judges to setting criminal-justice policy.

During the Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court nomination hearings in September 2018, Hirono became an outspoken defender of Christine Blasey Ford after Ford accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault, telling men to "shut up and step up. Do the right thing for a change.”[44][45][46]

Committee assignments (115th Congress)

NoMuslimBanEver 4250097
Hirono speaking at the "No Muslim Ban Ever" rally outside the Supreme Court, April 2018

Caucus memberships

Political positions

U.S. Senator Mazie Hirono at the 2019 Stop the Bans Rally
Hirono at a Stop the Bans rally in 2019

According to On the Issues, Hirono's voting history places her in the "left/liberal" camp.[49]


Hirono has a 100% rating from Naral Pro-Choice America.[49] She is also endorsed by EMILY's list for pro-choice women.[50]

Gun control

In 2016, she participated in the Chris Murphy gun control filibuster. Hirono expressed disappointment when the Democrat-proposed Feinstein Amendment (banning the sale of firearms to individuals on the terrorist watchlist) and the Republican-backed background check expansion and alert system (regarding guns being sold to terrorist watchlist suspects) both failed to pass the Senate.[51]

Health care

On July 28, 2017, two months after undergoing surgery for stage-four kidney cancer, Senator Hirono spoke on the Senate floor and voted against the so-called "skinny repeal" of the Affordable Care Act, nicknamed Obamacare.[52] Reporter Kyle Griffin of MSNBC filmed Senator Hirono's speech and posted it on Twitter.[53]

In January 2019, during the 2018–19 United States federal government shutdown, Hirono was one of thirty-four senators to sign a letter to Commissioner of Food and Drugs Scott Gottlieb recognizing the efforts of the FDA to address the effect of the government shutdown on the public health and employees while remaining alarmed "that the continued shutdown will result in increasingly harmful effects on the agency’s employees and the safety and security of the nation’s food and medical products."[54] Gottlieb said additional staff might be called in as needed.[55]


In April 2019, Hirono 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.[56]


In April 2019, Hirono was one of seven senators to sponsor the Digital Equity Act of 2019, legislation establishing a $120 million grant program that would fund both the creation and implementation of "comprehensive digital equity plans" in each U.S. state along with providing a $120 million grant program to give support toward projects developed by individuals and groups. The bill also gave the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) the role of evaluating and providing guidance toward digital equity projects.[57]

Electoral history

Hawaii's 2nd congressional district election, 2006
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Mazie Hirono 106,906 61.04
Republican Bob Hogue 68,244 38.96
Total votes 175,150 100.00
Democratic hold
Hawaii's 2nd congressional district election, 2008
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Mazie Hirono (inc.) 165,748 76.06
Republican Roger B. Evans 44,425 20.39
Independent Shaun Stenshol 4,042 1.85
Libertarian Jeff Mallan 3,699 1.70
Total votes 217,914 100.00
Democratic hold


Hawaii's 2nd congressional district election, 2010[58]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Mazie Hirono (incumbent) 132,290 72.19
Republican John W. Willoughby 46,404 25.32
Libertarian Pat Brock 3,254 1.78
Independent Andrew Von Sonn 1,310 0.71
Total votes 183,258 100.00
Democratic hold
Democratic primary results[59]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Mazie Hirono 134,745 57%
Democratic Ed Case 95,553 40%
Blank Votes 3,331 1%
Democratic Arturo Reyes 1,720 1%
Democratic Michael Gillespie 1,104 1%
Democratic Antonio Gimbernat 517 0.2%
Over Votes 110 0%
Total votes 237,080 100%
United States Senate election in Hawaii, 2012[60]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Mazie Hirono 269,489 62.60% +1.25%
Republican Linda Lingle 160,994 37.40% +0.62%
Total votes 430,483 100.0% N/A
Democratic hold
Democratic primary results, Hawaii 2018[61]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Mazie Hirono (incumbent) 201,679 100%
Total votes 201,679 100%
United States Senate election in Hawaii, 2018[62]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Mazie Hirono (incumbent) 276,316 71.15% +8.55%
Republican Ron Curtis 112,035 28.85% -8.55%
Total votes 388,351 100% N/A
Democratic hold

Personal life

Hirono announced in May 2017 that she had been diagnosed with stage 4 kidney cancer, which had spread to her seventh rib.[63] The cancer was discovered following a chest x-ray in April before some minor eye surgery.[64] Her right kidney was removed surgically on May 17, 2017, with a Cyberknife procedure to treat the rib lesion.[65][63] Hirono returned to the Senate on May 22, 2017, and was easily re-elected to a second term in November 2018.[66]

See also


  1. ^ "Buddhists Get the Vote". Manitoba Buddhist Temple. November 5, 2010. Retrieved August 12, 2012.
  2. ^ Camire, Dennis (January 5, 2007). "What happened to ... religious tolerance?". Honolulu Advertiser. Gannett Company. Retrieved August 9, 2011.
  3. ^ Jonathan Tilove. "New Congress brings with it religious firsts". Newhouse News Service. Archived from the original on December 19, 2006.
  4. ^ a b c d e f Rod Ohira (May 8, 1999). "Lieutenant governor reflects on the 'bookends' of her life". Honolulu Star-Bulletin. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  5. ^ a b c d Dan Boylan (March 21, 2007). "The Immigrant Congresswoman". Midweek. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  6. ^ LaFrance, Adrieene (January 12, 2014). "What It's Like To Be The Only Asian-American Woman in the U.S. Senate". Medium. Retrieved January 13, 2014.
  7. ^ "Mazie Hirono: From poverty to quiet power". Honolulu Advertiser. September 4, 2002. Retrieved September 23, 2012.
  8. ^ "Tari Sato". Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  9. ^ "Hawaii, Senate – Mazie Hirono". Retrieved April 10, 2015.
  10. ^ "Mazie Hirono Biography". A&E Television Networks. August 19, 2015.
  11. ^ "Mazie Keiko Hirono". Washington Times. Retrieved July 29, 2017.
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  14. ^ "HI State House 32 Race". Our Campaigns. November 6, 1984. Retrieved June 3, 2012.
  15. ^ "HI State House 22 – D Primary Race". Our Campaigns. September 19, 1992. Retrieved June 3, 2012.
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  17. ^ "HI Lt. Governor – D Primary Race". Our Campaigns. September 17, 1994. Retrieved June 3, 2012.
  18. ^ "HI Lt. Governor Race". Our Campaigns. November 8, 1994. Retrieved June 3, 2012.
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  22. ^ Borreca, Richard (September 23, 2002). "The race is on". Honolulu Star-Bulletin. Retrieved June 24, 2010.
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  33. ^ a b c d e f "Mazie Hirono on Abortion". On the Issues. Retrieved November 19, 2012.
  34. ^ "Sen. Mazie K. Hirono: Campaign Finance/Money". The Center for Responsive Politics. Retrieved November 19, 2012.
  35. ^ Strauss, Daniel (June 28, 2011). "EMILY's List backs Rep. Hirono in Hawaii Senate primary". TheHill. Retrieved May 19, 2018.
  36. ^ "Members". Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus. Retrieved May 17, 2018.
  37. ^ DePledge, Derrick (May 20, 2011). "Hirono to run for U.S. Senate". Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Retrieved June 18, 2011.
  38. ^ "Election Results". Office of Elections, State of Hawaii. Retrieved December 5, 2010.
  39. ^ "Hirono defeats Lingle in Senate race". Honolulu Star Advertiser. Associated Press. November 6, 2012. Archived from the original on November 13, 2012. Retrieved November 7, 2012.
  40. ^ Koh, Yoree (November 6, 2012). "Hirono Becomes First U.S. Senator Born in Japan". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved November 7, 2012.
  41. ^ Sandstrom, Aleksandra (March 21, 2017). "Majority of states have all-Christian congressional delegations". Pew Research Center. Retrieved May 19, 2018.
  42. ^ "Hawaii Senate 2012 Race". OpenSecrets. December 31, 2012. Retrieved May 19, 2018.
  43. ^ "General Election 2018 Final Summary Report" (PDF). State of Hawaii. November 13, 2018. Retrieved November 18, 2018.
  44. ^ Jalonick, Mary Claire (September 21, 2018). "Call for men to 'step up' puts Sen. Hirono in the spotlight". Associated Press.
  45. ^ Cummings, William (September 19, 2018). "Sen. Mazie Hirono to men: 'Just shut up and step up'". USA Today. Retrieved October 6, 2018.
  46. ^ Sullivan, Kate (September 18, 2018). "Sen. Hirono's message to men: 'Just shut up and step up. Do the right thing.'". CNN. Retrieved November 18, 2018.
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  49. ^ a b "Mazie Hirono on the Issues". On the Issues. Retrieved November 18, 2018.
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  53. ^ Griffin, Kyle (July 28, 2017). "Personal, moving speech from Mazie Hirono tonight about her cancer diagnosis. This is worth your time". Twitter. Retrieved July 29, 2017.
  54. ^ "Democratic Senators 'Alarmed' by Shutdown's Potential Impact on Food Safety". January 15, 2019.
  55. ^ "FDA May Call Back More Furloughed Staff for Food Safety Checks Amid Shutdown". Forbes. January 20, 2019. Retrieved February 6, 2019.
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  57. ^ Birnbaum, Emily (April 17, 2019). "Dems introduce bill to tackle 'digital divide'". The Hill.
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  60. ^
  61. ^ "2018 Hawaii primary election results" (PDF). Retrieved June 12, 2019.
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  63. ^ a b Hamedy, Saba (May 16, 2017). "Hawaii Sen. Mazie Hirono diagnosed with kidney cancer". Retrieved June 3, 2017.
  64. ^ Drewes, Paul (May 17, 2017). "Sudden surgery for Senator Mazie Hirono". KITV. Retrieved June 3, 2017.
  65. ^ "US Senator Mazie Hirono Recovering After Kidney Surgery". U.S. News & World Report. Associated Press. May 17, 2017. Retrieved June 3, 2017.
  66. ^ "Hirono returns to Senate following kidney surgery with message of thanks". KHON-TV. May 22, 2017. Retrieved June 3, 2017.

Further reading

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Ben Cayetano
Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii
Succeeded by
Duke Aiona
Party political offices
Preceded by
Ben Cayetano
Democratic nominee for Governor of Hawaii
Succeeded by
Randy Iwase
Preceded by
Daniel Akaka
Democratic nominee for U.S. Senator from Hawaii
(Class 1)

2012, 2018
Most recent
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Ed Case
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Hawaii's 2nd congressional district

Succeeded by
Tulsi Gabbard
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
Daniel Akaka
U.S. Senator (Class 1) from Hawaii
Served alongside: Brian Schatz
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Chris Murphy
United States Senators by seniority
Succeeded by
Martin Heinrich
2002 Hawaii gubernatorial election

The 2002 Hawaii gubernatorial election was held on November 5, 2002 to select the Governor of Hawaii. Incumbent Democratic Governor of Hawaii Ben Cayetano was term-limited and therefore could not run for re-election. Former Maui Mayor Linda Lingle, who had narrowly lost the 1998 election, was nominated once again by the Republicans while Lieutenant Governor Mazie Hirono earned the Democratic nomination in a tightly fought race. Lingle and Hirono duked it out in a toughly-fought campaign, with Hirono's campaign crippled by allegations of corruption within the Hawaii Democratic Party and many voters desiring a change. Ultimately, Lingle narrowly defeated Hirono in one of the state's closest gubernatorial elections, making her the first Republican Governor of Hawaii since 1962 and the state's first ever female Governor.

2006 United States House of Representatives elections in Hawaii

The 2006 congressional elections in Hawaii were held on November 4, 2006 to determine who was to represent the state of Hawaii in the United States House of Representatives for the 111th Congress. Hawaii has two seats in the House, apportioned according to the 2000 United States Census. Representatives are elected for two-year terms.

2008 United States House of Representatives elections in Hawaii

The 2008 congressional elections in Hawaii were held on November 4, 2008 to determine who was to represent the state of Hawaii in the United States House of Representatives for the 111th Congress from January 3, 2009, until their terms of office expire on January 3, 2011. Incumbent Neil Abercrombie (D) was reelected in Hawaii's 1st congressional district. Incumbent Mazie Hirono (D) was reelected in Hawaii's 2nd congressional district.

Hawaii has two seats in the House, apportioned according to the 2000 United States Census. Representatives are elected for two-year terms. The election coincided with the 2008 U.S. presidential election.

2010 United States House of Representatives elections in Hawaii

The 2010 congressional elections in Hawaii was held on November 4, 2010 to determine who was to represent the state of Hawaii in the United States House of Representatives for the 112th Congress from January 2011, until their terms of office expire in January 2013.

Hawaii has two seats in the House, apportioned according to the 2000 United States Census. Representatives are elected for two-year terms. The election coincided with the 2010 gubernatorial election.

2012 Hawaii elections

Hawaii's 2012 general elections were held on November 6, 2012. Primary elections were held on August 11, 2012.

2012 United States Senate election in Hawaii

The 2012 United States Senate election in Hawaii took place on November 6, 2012, concurrently with the 2012 U.S. presidential election as well as other elections to the United States Senate and House of Representatives and various state and local elections. Incumbent Democratic U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka decided to retire instead of running for re-election to a fourth term. Democratic Congresswoman Mazie Hirono defeated former Hawaii Governor Linda Lingle in a rematch of the 2002 Hawaii gubernatorial election.

2018 United States Senate election in Hawaii

The 2018 United States Senate election in Hawaii took place on November 6, 2018. Incumbent Democratic U.S. Senator Mazie Hirono ran for reelection to a second term. Hirono ran unopposed in her party's primary and was easily reelected, defeating Republican challenger Ron Curtis. She won the highest vote percentage of any U.S. Senate candidate in 2018.

The primary election took place on August 11, 2018.

Brian Schatz

Brian Emanuel Schatz (; 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. 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. 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.

Daniel Akaka

Daniel Kahikina Akaka (; September 11, 1924 – April 6, 2018) was an American educator and politician who was a United States Senator from Hawaii from 1990 to 2013.

A member of the Democratic Party, Akaka was the first U.S. Senator of Native Hawaiian ancestry.Born in Honolulu, he served in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers during World War II. He attended the University of Hawaii, where he received his bachelor's and master's degrees. Originally a high school teacher, Akaka went on to serve as a principal for six years. In 1969, the Department of Education hired him as a chief program planner. In the 1970s, he served in various governmental positions.

Akaka was first elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1976 to represent Hawaii's Second Congressional District, and he served for 13 years. In 1990, he was appointed to the U.S. Senate to succeed the deceased Spark Matsunaga, subsequently winning the special election to complete Matsunaga's term. He would later be re-elected to three full terms. In March 2011, he announced he would not run for re-election in 2012.After fellow U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye died on December 17, 2012, Akaka became the state's senior senator, and briefly remained so until he left office on January 3, 2013. He was succeeded by fellow Democrat Mazie Hirono.

Ed Case

Edward Espenett Case (born September 27, 1952) is an American Democratic politician serving as the U.S. Representative for Hawaii's 1st congressional district, which covers the urban core of Honolulu. He represented the 2nd district, which covers the rest of the state, from 2002 to 2007.

Case, a Blue Dog Democrat, first came to prominence in Hawaii as majority leader of the Hawaii State Legislature and in his 2002 campaign for governor of Hawaii.

First elected to the House of Representatives in 2002 in a special election to fill the seat of Patsy Mink, who died of pneumonia, Case represented Hawaii's 2nd congressional district until 2006, when he unsuccessfully challenged Daniel Akaka in the Democratic primary for the U.S. Senate.

In 2010 Case was one of two Democratic candidates in the special election for Hawaii's 1st congressional district. With the Democratic vote split, Republican Councilman Charles Djou's 39% of the vote earned him the seat. Case ran again in the Democratic primary for the November general election, but suspended his campaign in May. Colleen Hanabusa, Case's fellow Democrat in the special election, went on to win the primary and the general election against Djou. Case again ran for the Senate in 2012 after Daniel Akaka announced his retirement, but lost to Mazie Hirono.In July 2013 Case announced that he was joining Outrigger Enterprises Group and that his political career was "likely" over. In June 2018, Case reversed his decision and announced he would run again in Hawaii's 1st congressional district. Case won the crowded Democratic primary election in August 2018, and went on to win the general election. He took office in January 2019.

Hawaii's 2nd congressional district

Hawaii's 2nd congressional district is a congressional district in the U.S. state of Hawaii. The district encompasses all rural and most suburban areas of Oahu/Honolulu County, as well as the entire state outside of Oahu. Besides Honolulu, the district includes the counties of Kauai, Maui, Kalawao and Hawaii ("the Big Island"). The district spans 331 miles. The most populous community entirely within the district is Hilo. Major segments of the economy include tourism, ranching and agriculture, especially pineapple and sugarcane cultivation.

The district is represented by Democrat Tulsi Gabbard.

List of United States senators born outside the United States

This is a list of United States senators born outside the United States. It includes senators born in foreign countries (whether to American or foreign parents). The list also includes senators born in territories outside the United States that were later incorporated into the United States (except for those born in the British colonies and territories in North America (or in the temporarily independent former British colonies and territories in North America) that would go on to form the United States of America).

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.

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.

Senate Concurrent Resolution 10 of the 113th Congress

The bill Senate Concurrent Resolution 10, "A concurrent resolution authorizing the use of Emancipation Hall in the Capitol Visitor Center for an event to celebrate the birthday of King Kamehameha", was introduced into the United States Senate in the 113th United States Congress on March 22, 2013. It was sponsored by Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI). It was passed by the Senate on April 8, 2013 and referred to the United States House of Representatives.

United States Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support

The Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support is one of seven subcommittees within the Senate Armed Services Committee.

United States Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower

The Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower is one of seven subcommittees within the Senate Armed Services Committee.

United States Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs

The United States Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs deals with oversight of United States veterans issues.

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
Territorial (1899–1959)
One At-large seat (1959–1963)
Two At-large seat (1963–1971)
Districts (1971–present)
Hawaii's delegation(s) to the 110th–present United States Congresses (ordered by seniority)
110th Senate: D. InouyeD. Akaka House: N. Abercrombie • M. Hirono
111th Senate: D. InouyeD. Akaka House: N. Abercrombie • M. Hirono • C. Djou
112th Senate: D. InouyeD. AkakaB. Schatz House: M. Hirono • C. 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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