Hawaii’s four congressional reps are quoted in a story in The Hill this morning discussing how the small delegation is finally working well together and attempting to regain some of the clout and momentum that was lost with the death of senior Sen. Dan Inouye and the retirement of longtime Sen. Dan Akaka.
It’s no secret that the delegation didn’t collaborate as much as they probably should have the last couple years. Former Gov. Neil Abercrombie appointed Brian Schatz to the seat left open by Inouye. Then-U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, who thought she should have gotten the political nod, decided to run against Schatz in the 2014 election. So it seemed like the storyline was more about one-upping the other then really pulling together.
But that would appear to no longer be the case, according to The Hill. The story describes collegial meetings on strategic positioning and lots of positive things to say about each other.
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard suggests that a close working relationship is giving the delegation an advantage.
“The rapport is there,” Gabbard tells The Hill’s Martin Matishak. “At the beginning, middle and end of the day, Hawaii is a small state, and making sure that each of us individually and collectively advocates for Hawaii and the unique, both challenges and opportunities, that exist there, is something that is our focus.”
Hawaii Sens. Brian Schatz and Mazie Hirono.
Courtesy of Sen. Mazie Hirono
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Patti Epler is the Editor and General Manager of Civil Beat. She's been a reporter and editor for more than 30 years, primarily in Hawaii, Alaska, Washington and Arizona. You can follow her on twitter at @PattiEpler, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or call her at 808-377-0561.