Press Releases

March 30, 2020

Hirono, Menendez Lead Senate Colleagues in Call for Increased Funding for Public Health Preparedness Programs in Fiscal Year 2021

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) led 24 of their Senate colleagues in calling for increased funding in Fiscal Year 2021 for the Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program (PHEP) and the Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP), which enable hospitals and public health departments to prepare to prevent, respond, and rapidly recover from public health crises. Recent legislation has provided supplemental emergency funds for both the PHEP and HPP to res… Continue Reading

March 27, 2020

Hirono Joins Baldwin, Warren, Booker, Senate Colleagues in Urging FDA to Change Discriminatory Blood Donation Policies to Combat Shortages Amidst Coronavirus Pandemic

WASHINGTON, D.C. - As the United States confronts a growing blood shortage brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Cory Booker (D-N.J.), and a group of their colleagues expressed concern about the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) discriminatory blood donation deferral policy for men who have sex with men (MSM). As government officials encourage every healthy American to consider donating blood during … Continue Reading

March 26, 2020

Hirono Secures Debt Relief for Hawaii Small Businesses in Third Coronavirus Package

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) successfully secured debt relief for Hawaii small businesses in the third coronavirus recovery package. The package includes provisions from the Small Business Debt Relief Act, which Senator Hirono introduced last week with Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.) to temporarily cover small business loan payments for existing 7(a) and 504 loans backed by the Small Business Administration (SBA). "During this difficult time, local small businesses need t… Continue Reading

March 25, 2020

Hirono Statement in Support of Bipartisan, Compromise Coronavirus Response Package that Bolsters Response, Helps Families, Workers, and Small Businesses

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) voted in favor of H.R. 748 - the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. This wide-ranging legislation will inject $2 trillion into boosting funding to our medical system, providing economic support to workers, small businesses, and state and local governments that are bearing the brunt of the necessary but difficult measures being put in place to combat the coronavirus. "The coronavirus pandemic is a challenge tha… Continue Reading

March 25, 2020

Third Coronavirus Funding Package Includes Hirono-Backed Unemployment Assistance Expansion

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced today that she successfully secured a major expansion of unemployment assistance in the third emergency coronavirus stimulus package. The package, which is the product of intense bipartisan negotiations, includes Senator Hirono's Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Act - legislation she introduced with Senators Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), and Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.). Senator Hirono's bill expands unempl… Continue Reading

March 25, 2020

Hirono, Klobuchar, Blumenthal, Cortez Masto Introduce Bill To Stop Price Gouging During Catastrophes

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Amy Klobuchar, (D-Minn.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) introduced the Disaster and Emergency Pricing Abuse Prevention Act, a bill that would prevent price gouging on essential services or goods during catastrophes. The bill would prohibit the sale of goods or services at overly inflated prices before or during a natural disaster, pandemic, or state of emergency, and allow the Federal Trade Commission to … Continue Reading

March 24, 2020

Hirono Joins Baldwin, Colleagues to Require Use of Defense Production Act for Medical Supplies, Personal Protective Equipment for Hospitals, Health Care Workers

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) joined Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) to introduce legislation that would expedite the full use of the Defense Production Act to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. The legislation would require President Trump to immediately begin a series of measures to secure urgently needed medical supplies, including Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for health care workers. "The country cannot take any more dithering from the President about what he will o… Continue Reading

March 24, 2020

Hirono, Colleagues Call on Administration to Assist Victims and Survivors of Domestic Violence During Coronavirus Outbreak

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) joined her Senate colleagues on a letter led by Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), and Bob Casey (D-Penn.), urging the Administration to help ensure that domestic violence victims and survivors receive the resources they need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Domestic violence service providers are anticipating an increased need in their services in the wake of the severe measures being taken to stop the spread of… Continue Reading

March 23, 2020

Senator Hirono: On 10th Anniversary of ACA, Trump Sabotaging Health Care During Coronavirus Pandemic

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, on the 10th anniversary of the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) enactment, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) called on the Trump Administration to abandon its efforts to repeal the law. Last week, Senator Hirono joined Senator Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and 18 of their colleagues in urging President Trump to forgo his malicious attempts to sabotage and undermine our nation's health care system. The President's attacks on the ACA are especially dangerous during the COVID-19 pandemic … Continue Reading

March 22, 2020

Hirono Statement in Opposition to the McConnell Coronavirus Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) released the following statement on Mitch McConnell's coronavirus bill: "Governors across the country are having to step up in the absence of meaningful action from the Trump Administration in combating the coronavirus. This is especially difficult because states do not know how widespread coronavirus is in their communities because we still don't have enough test kits. "Yesterday, the Governor of Hawaii - working with county mayors, the vi… Continue Reading

March 20, 2020

Hirono, Cardin, Small Business Committee Democrats Announce Proposal to Ease Economic Disruption for Small Businesses Due to COVID-19

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) joined her Democratic colleagues on the Small Business Committee to introduce the COVID-19 RELIEF for Small Businesses Act, a comprehensive proposal to provide relief for small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The proposal enhances existing tools available to the Small Business Administration (SBA) and creates new ones to expand the federal government's capacity to bolster small businesses during this difficult time. "We all rec… Continue Reading

March 20, 2020

SBA Approves Disaster Assistance for Hawaii Small Businesses

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), a member of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, announced today that the Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved an economic disaster declaration for the state of Hawaii due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With this disaster declaration, Hawaii businesses affected by the outbreak can now apply for SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL). "The SBA's decision today unlocks much-needed assistance for Hawaii smal… Continue Reading

March 20, 2020

Following Hirono Request, Trump Administration Moves Tax Day to July 15

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) released the following statement after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced that Tax Day would move from April 15 to July 15 for businesses and taxpayers: "As Americans continue to confront the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the last thing they need to worry about is the looming tax deadline," Senator Hirono said. "This delay provides much needed flexibility for taxpayers so that we can all focus on the essential task of confronting t… Continue Reading

March 20, 2020

As the Coronavirus Outbreak Creates Historic Disruptions, Hirono and Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Protect Access to the Ballot Box

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Ranking Member on the Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on the Constitution, and her colleagues introduced the Natural Disaster and Emergency Ballot Act of 2020. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Ranking Member of the Senate Rules Committee with oversight jurisdiction over federal elections, and Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee, led the effort. This legislation would ensure that Americans are… Continue Reading

March 18, 2020

Hirono Supports Bipartisan Coronavirus Relief Legislation, Urges More Action to Help Workers, Families, and Most Vulnerable

Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) issued the following statement after voting in favor of the Families First Coronavirus Act that passed the U.S. Senate 90-8: "While this legislation provides free coronavirus testing, expands paid leave, enhances unemployment benefits, and increases food assistance, we will need to do much more to help American families, workers, and small businesses," Senator Hirono said. "I will continue to fight to ensure workers, families, and the most vulnerable in… Continue Reading

March 18, 2020

Hirono, 16 Senate Colleagues: Trump Administration Must Answer for Delays, Shortage in COVID-19 Testing Kits

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and 16 of her Senate colleagues wrote to Vice President Pence and Assistant Secretary of Health Brett Giroir, the Trump Administration's new COVID-19 head of diagnostic efforts, demanding an explanation of the Administration's unmitigated failure to produce sufficient test kits, which has hampered the nation's ability to effectively detect COVID-19 and take necessary actions to slow the spread of the virus. The Senators cite the weeks in del… Continue Reading

March 17, 2020

Hirono, Democratic Colleagues Advocate for Maximum Telework Capabilities for Federal Employees

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and 26 of her colleagues called on President Trump to issue an executive order to direct all federal agencies to maximize telework capabilities. This call comes as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) promotes social distancing and suggests minimizing large gatherings. Last week, Senator Hirono and Senators Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) introduced legislation that would require the federal government to exp… Continue Reading

March 16, 2020

Hirono Joins Call for IRS to Extend Individual Taxpayer Filing Deadline

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) joined 19 of her Senate colleagues to urge the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to extend the April 15, 2020 filing deadline for federal individual income taxes so that taxpayers will have additional flexibility during the COVID-19 pandemic. Senators Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), a senior member of the Senate Finance Committee, and Patty Murray (D-Wash.), the Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee led the… Continue Reading

March 13, 2020

Hirono, Reed, Senate Democrats Urge Trump Administration to Re-Open the ACA Enrollment Window

WASHINGTON, DC - Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Jack Reed (D-R.I.) led 23 Senate Democrats in urging the Trump Administration to create a special enrollment period to allow uninsured Americans to purchase health insurance on the Affordable Care Act marketplaces. Over 80 million Americans are either uninsured or underinsured, including the 27.5 million Americans who lack insurance of any kind and millions more Americans who have "junk plans" that provide minimal coverage and could lea… Continue Reading

March 12, 2020

Hirono, Peters, Schatz, Young, Romney, Kilmer, Rutherford, Herrera Beutler Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Provide Unemployment Assistance to People Unable to Work Due to Coronavirus Outbreak

WASHINGTON, DC - Today, U.S. Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Todd Young (R-Ind.), and Mitt Romney (R-Utah), and U.S. Representatives Derek Kilmer (D-Wash.), John Rutherford (R-Fla.), and Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-Wash.) introduced the Coronavirus Worker Relief Act. The new bipartisan, bicameral legislation will provide disaster unemployment assistance to people who are unable to work due to the current coronavirus outbreak. Assistance will be a… Continue Reading

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