In spite of being heavily outnumbered by Democrats, the eight Republicans in the House of Representatives and the lone Republican in the Senate say they still can make a difference at the Legislature.

That may be so, but not when it comes to getting their own bills passed.

None — zero, zip, nada — of the measures authored by GOP lawmakers survived the session. Only three of their bills managed to make it to the halfway mark.

184 Dead Bills

A Civil Beat analysis of the 122 bills introduced by House Republicans and the 62 introduced by the single Senate Republican shows that none passed.

Political affiliation would appear to be a factor in the GOP’s failure.

The 62 bills that came from Sen. Sam Slom — he is both Minority Leader and Minority Floor Leader and serves on all 14 Senate committees — ranked him at No. 7 out of all 25 senators. Yet, each of the six Democrats who introduced more bills than Slom saw at least three of those bills passed.

However, six Democratic senators also failed to get any of their bills passed.

(Civil Beat will report later this week on how House and Senate Democrats fared this year in terms of bill passage.)

Only one of Slom’s bills crossed out of the Senate into the House for consideration. Senate Bill 871 would have allowed home-schooled students to participate on an equal basis in extracurricular activities offered at the public school they would otherwise be required to attend.

On the House side, meanwhile, the 122 bills for which House Republicans were the primary introducers included 45 that came from Minority Leader Gene Ward. That placed Ward at No. 8 out of all 51 House members in terms of total bills introduced.

But all of the House GOP bills are dead. Kaput. Make. Bereft of life.

At the halfway mark, only three bills introduced by Republicans had crossed over.

They were House Bill 1598, relating to the cacao industry; House Bill 1431, relating to covenants; and House Bill 18, relating to all-terrain vehicles.


Many Republicans were co-introducers on bills authored by Democrats that did pass, and many voted in favor of bills they were not directly involved with. (Civil Beat’s analysis only considered bills where a Republican was the chief sponsor.)

The GOP can also make the argument that they influenced the outcome of certain bills. House Minority Policy Leader Barbara Marumoto, for example, was an early and constant critic of a proposal to tax pension incomes — a proposal that died in the last days of the Legislature.

And all of the bills that did not make it in 2011 will technically be alive in the 2012 session.

You can’t say the GOP’s failure to pass bills was for a lack of trying. This year, for example, House Republicans nearly tripled the number of bills they introduced as compared with last year.

However, just like this year, in 2010 none of the House GOP’s bills passed, and only one measure introduced by Senate Republicans — there were two of them last year — passed.

Republicans’ Tough Luck at the Ledge

Here’s a complete breakdown for Republican bills at the 2011 Legislature.

Author Introduced Passed Died Percent Passed
SLOM 62 0 62 0.0%
WARD 45 0 45 0.0%
MARUMOTO 22 0 22 0.0%
PINE 17 0 17 0.0%
THIELEN 15 0 15 0.0%
CHING 12 0 12 0.0%
FONTAINE 4 0 4 0.0%
RIVIERE 4 0 4 0.0%
JOHANSON 3 0 3 0.0%
TOTAL 184 0 184 0.0%

Source: Civil Beat analysis of Hawaii public records

View the House Minority Caucus’ legislative package here, and read the list of Slom’s bills, which are printed at the bottom of his member webpage. (The list includes all bills Slom signed on to.)

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