Press Releases

October 31, 2019

Senate Passes Hirono Provision to Investigate Challenges Facing Hawaii Orchid Growers

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today the U.S. Senate approved a package of four fiscal year (FY) 2020 appropriations bills on an 84-9 vote. In addition to supporting many needed investments for Hawaii, the legislation included a bipartisan amendment added on the Senate floor by Senator Mazie K. Hirono and Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), which requires the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to submit a report on the economic and environmental impacts of importing orchids in growing media. The bipartisan F… Continue Reading

October 22, 2019

Following Hirono, Stabenow-led Advocacy, Inspector General Opens Investigation into Suppression of Science at USDA

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) announced today that Phyllis K. Fong, the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), opened an investigation into potential suppression and alteration of scientific reports, documents, and communications by political appointees at USDA. Today's announcement followed a June request by Senators Hirono, Stabenow, and 17 Senate Democrats to initiate the investigation following widespread report… Continue Reading

October 17, 2019

Hirono Calls for Department of Defense to Address Alarming Increase in National Guard Suicide Rate

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) joined a bipartisan group of senators in calling on the Department of Defense (DoD) to address the increasing suicide rate among members of the National Guard. Recent suicide reports conducted by DoD found that the suicide mortality rate for the National Guard is consistently higher than that of Active Duty and Reserve members. "We cannot continue to treat the National Guard as just another branch of the Active Army and Air Force while not … Continue Reading

October 16, 2019

Senator Hirono Announces $6.5 Million for State’s First Cutting Edge Cancer Research Clinic

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced $6.5 million in federal grant funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to support construction of a new clinical research center - the first of its kind in the state - at the University of Hawaii Cancer Center that will focus on early-phase clinical trials. "Cancer patients in Hawaii currently have to travel to the mainland to access cutting-edge treatments through early-phase clinical trials, creating a financia… Continue Reading

October 10, 2019

Senator Hirono Urges Supreme Court to Establish a Path to Citizenship for Dreamers

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) joined more than 170 Members of Congress and former Representatives last week in filing a bipartisan amicus brief in the Supreme Court in support of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. "Donald Trump put the lives of Dreamers at risk when he canceled DACA and sabotaged every effort Congress made to protect these young people. After creating this mess, he's now looking to his appointees on the Supreme Court to ignor… Continue Reading

October 10, 2019

Senator Hirono Announces Over $500,000 in Funding to Help Hawaii Businesses Reach Global Markets

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced over $500,000 in federal grant funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to support the Hawaii State Trade Expansion Program (HiSTEP). "Local small businesses must be able to reach overseas markets and share their products if we are going to compete and thrive in today's economy," said Senator Hirono. "Hawaii made products are iconic and this funding will support continued efforts to diversify our local econo… Continue Reading

October 08, 2019

Senator Hirono Statement on President Trump’s Announcement to Withdraw Troops from Syria

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) issued the following statement on the President's decision to withdraw American troops from Northern Syria: "President Trump's hasty, unilateral decision to withdraw U.S. troops and abandon our Kurdish allies in Northern Syria was made without consulting senior military and State Department officials. Trump's rationale is based on lies and misinformation which are evident in his tweets. "The President continues a pattern of erratic behavio… Continue Reading

October 01, 2019

Senator Hirono Reintroduces Legislative Plan to Improve Opportunities for Women and Minorities in STEM

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) last week reintroduced her legislative plan to improve opportunities for women and minorities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. "Women and minorities in STEM fields face obstacles at every step of their careers," said Senator Hirono. "The STEM Opportunities Act and Women and Minorities in STEM Booster Act will break down barriers and promote opportunities to engage our entire talent pool. As the demand for ST… Continue Reading

October 01, 2019

Hawaii Congressional Delegation Urges USDA to Provide “Unique Assistance” to Hawaii Farmers Affected By Kilauea Eruption

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a letter to Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue, the Hawaii Congressional Delegation is urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to provide much needed relief to Hawaii farmers and agricultural producers who were uniquely affected by the Kilauea eruption. Unlike farmers impacted by floods and wildfires, Hawaii producers faced unique losses - including permanent loss of land - due to lava inundation. In their letter to USDA, the Hawaii Congressional Delegation emp… Continue Reading

September 26, 2019

Senator Hirono Opposes Nomination of Eugene Scalia to be Secretary of Labor

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) issued the following statement after voting against the confirmation of Eugene Scalia to serve as Secretary of Labor: "Throughout his presidency, Donald Trump has consistently nominated individuals to serve in his cabinet who have major conflicts of interest and who are hostile to the Departments they are chosen to lead. The nomination of Eugene Scalia to be Secretary of Labor fits squarely within this pattern, and his confirmation will res… Continue Reading

September 26, 2019

Senate Passes Hirono-Backed Legislation to Combat Veterans Homelessness, Keep the Manila VA Open for Business

WASHINGTON D.C. - This week, the U.S. Senate passed H.R. 4285, the Department of Veterans Affairs Expiring Authorities Act of 2019 to extend many critical veterans programs, including two measures authored by Senator Mazie K. Hirono. Without Congressional action, these programs would have expired on September 30, 2019. "I thank my Senate colleagues for quickly passing this comprehensive bill to ensure that veterans do not lose access to the services they depend on," said Senator Hirono. "I am e… Continue Reading

September 24, 2019

Hirono Statement on the House of Representatives Opening a Formal Impeachment Inquiry into Donald Trump

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) issued the following statement after Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced the House of Representatives is opening a formal impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump. "I commend Speaker Pelosi and House Democrats for opening a formal impeachment inquiry that will lay out for the American people whether Donald Trump committed high crimes and misdemeanors. "Here's what we know: · He obstructed justice as detailed in the Muel… Continue Reading

September 19, 2019

Hirono, Senate Democrats Press USDA to Justify Critical Honeybee Data Gaps

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and 22 Senate Democrats wrote to Sonny Perdue, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, expressing concerns over the Department's National Agricultural Statistics Service's (NASS) decision to reduce or even suspend the collection of honeybee data across the nation. "In July NASS announced that it would suspend the collection of quarterly data for the annual Honey Bee Colonies report. The Honey Bee Colonies report, first published in … Continue Reading

September 18, 2019

Hirono, Senate Democrats Urge Trump Administration to Rescind Termination of the Filipino World War II Veteran Parole Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and 13 Senate Democrats wrote to Ken Cuccinelli, the acting director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, urging him to rescind the Trump Administration's decision to terminate the Filipino World War II Veterans Parole Program (FWVP). "Over the past two years, the Trump administration has repeatedly attacked immigrants, and once again, its anti-immigrant disposition is reflected in this harmful and unnecessary action to end a progra… Continue Reading

September 17, 2019

Hirono, 26 Senate Democrats Introduce Legislation to Block Implementation of Trump Administration’s So-Called “Public Charge” Rule

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and 26 Senate Democrats introduced the Protect American Values Act - legislation that would prohibit the Trump Administration from using federal funding to implement its so-called "public charge" rule. Scheduled to go into effect on October 15, 2019, the "public charge" rule aims to prevent immigrants from coming to or staying in the United States based on factors such as their wealth, family size, age, skills, level of education, or a… Continue Reading

September 15, 2019

Hirono Statement on New Reporting Regarding Sexual Assault Allegations against Justice Brett Kavanaugh

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) issued the following statement in response to the publication of new reporting from the New York Times regarding the sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh: "Brett Kavanaugh should never have been confirmed to the Supreme Court. It was plain to me and many others at the time that the FBI 'investigation' into the serious, corroborated allegations of sexual assault by Justice Kavanaugh was a sham. New reportin… Continue Reading

September 13, 2019

Hirono Accepting Applications for Military Service Academy Nominations

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono announced she is currently accepting applications from Hawaii students seeking a military service academy nomination. Each year, Senator Hirono nominates Hawaii students to the Air Force Academy, U.S. Military Academy, Naval Academy, and the Merchant Marine Academy. Qualified students seeking a Congressional nomination from Senator Hirono must apply by the October 31, 2019 deadline. "Each year, I have the privilege of nominating talented Hawaii student… Continue Reading

September 11, 2019

Hirono, Senate Democrats Demand Answers from Commerce IG on Reports of Suppression and Retaliation at NOAA

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and 13 Senate Democrats wrote to U.S. Department of Commerce Inspector General Peggy Gustafson demanding answers following recent reports of improper behavior at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA), including one that Commerce Department officials threatened to fire NOAA employees for contradicting the President's false assertions about the projected path of Hurricane Dorian. In their letter, the Senators also denounced t… Continue Reading

September 11, 2019

Hirono, Perdue Visit USINDOPACOM, Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard

Last week, Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and David Perdue (R-Ga.) - the Ranking Member and Chair of the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower - visited U.S. Indo-Pacific Command headquarters and toured Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard. During their visit, Senators Hirono and Perdue met with Admiral Philip Davidson, Commander of United States Indo-Pacific Command (INDOPACOM), and were also briefed by the Marine Corps Forces Pacific (MARFORPAC), Pacific Air Forces (PACAF), the Navy's Pa… Continue Reading

September 05, 2019

Hirono, Young Lead Successful Bipartisan, Bicameral Effort to Secure REAL ID Act-Compliant Identification for FAS Citizens

HONOLULU - In response to a bipartisan, bicameral effort led by Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Representative Don Young (R-Alaska), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that it would remove unnecessary barriers placed on citizens of the Freely Associated States (FAS) seeking to secure REAL ID Act-compliant identification. This announcement reverses guidance previously released by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services that required FAS citizens of the Federated States … Continue Reading

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