With health care and immigration front and center on the national stage, U.S. Sens. Mazie Hirono and Brian Schatz are increasingly taking to social media and traditional news outlets to vent their views on the Trump administration’s policy.

For example, late-night television’s Stephen Colbert last week riffed on a recent Schatz tweet:

After yesterday’s CBO score, people started piling on. According to Democratic Senator Brian Schatz, ‘CBO confirms this thing is a %#$@ sandwich. We do not know what word was redacted, so let’s just say it’s a Schatz sandwich.

Colbert added, “I trust I’m mispronouncing his name correctly.”


Meanwhile, the reaction of Hawaii’s other senator, also a Democrat, to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last week to partially lift the travel ban was picked up by the conservative Washington Examiner.

Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, on Monday called conservative Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito “the three horsemen of the apocalypse” who are “waiting for the fourth one to come along.”

The pointed, sometimes funny and attention-grabbing comments from Hirono and Schatz are not one-offs. Both senators have as of late elevated their political and policy presence nationally, sometimes approaching the rarified air occupied by Hawaii U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard.

It’s by design. Health care and immigration are top-of-mind issues for a home state with some of the best health care in the nation and a rich and unique immigration history.

Mazie Hirono with Andrea Mitchell:

It’s also personal. Schatz’s dad was a medical doctor and Hirono is the only immigrant currently serving in the U.S. Senate.

And Trump’s plan to repeal and replace Obamacare comes at a delicate time for Hirono, who last week underwent her second surgery for cancer in just two months.

Here’s a sample of recent tweets and retweets from our senators:

Gabbard and U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa have not been silent on these and other issues. And it’s worth noting that they and Schatz all have endorsed Hirono’s re-election next year.

But Hawaii’s senators are, to use a favorite word of Hirono’s, heavily in “fight” mode.

Trumpcare In The Crosshairs

The immigration matter is now in the hands of the high court, which expects to hear arguments in October.

But health care is on the Senate’s agenda now and will be taken up next week after Congress returns from its July 4 recess.

We can expect to hear more from Hirono and Schatz as Senate Republicans debate whether they can strike a Trumpcare compromise that satisfies party moderates and conservative, even if it requires canceling the August recess.

Meanwhile, the president and some senators are now calling for just a repeal of the Affordable Care Act, with a promise to pass a replacement later.

It’s not just health care and immigration that have fired up our senators. Schatz is a champion of net neutrality while Hirono is never hesitant to speak out in support of women’s rights.

Both were noted in a recent news item that found they had the most diverse Senate offices.

But our senators are sure to continue fighting (there’s that word again) for health care and immigration. Follow their progress on Twitter:

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