Press Releases

April 18, 2017

Hirono, Moran, Tester Introduce Bill to Provide Disabled Veteran Employees at VA Additional Paid Leave

Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) and Jon Tester (D-Mont.) introduced S. 899, the bipartisan Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Veteran Transition Improvement Act, to ensure veterans with a disability rating of 30% or higher who are hired by the VA in critical medical positions can access additional paid sick leave during their first year on the job for the purposes of receiving medical care related to their service-connected condition. "As the VA works to fill tens o… Continue Reading

April 13, 2017

Hirono, Daines Pass Resolution to Celebrate National Park Week

Senators Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Steve Daines (R-Mont.), the Ranking Member and Chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee on National Parks, celebrated the unanimous U.S. Senate passage of their resolution to mark April 15 through April 23 as National Park Week. "Last fall, I joined our National Park Service ohana and Hawaii students to celebrate the centennials of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and Haleakala National Park," said Senator Hirono. "National Park Week is… Continue Reading

April 12, 2017

Hirono Leads Letter to Attorney General on Administration’s Troubling Review of Consent Decrees

Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and 15 Senate Democrats pressed Attorney General Jeff Sessions for answers on the Department of Justice's plan to review consent decrees between the federal government and local law enforcement agencies. The Senators asked Attorney General Sessions to lay out the impact of the review, including if the Department of Justice's actions could result in the termination or modification of existing consent decrees. "Consent decrees offer both parties the opportunity … Continue Reading

April 11, 2017

Hirono Announces Six-Month Program for Mobile Biometrics Services on Neighbor Islands

Senator Mazie K. Hirono announced that the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will conduct a six month mobile biometrics pilot program for immigration benefits on Hawaii Island, Kauai, and Maui from May through September. "This pilot program will provide neighbor island residents with more equitable access to biometrics services as they apply for immigration benefits," said Senator Hirono. In June 2016 Senator Hirono wrote to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Directo… Continue Reading

April 11, 2017

Hirono, Rounds, Kilmer, Jones Introduce Bill to Cut Red Tape for Defense Department Employees

Senator Mazie K. Hirono and Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), members of the Senate Armed Services Committee, introduced a bipartisan, bicameral bill to repeal burdensome Department of Defense requirements for service members and civilian employees. The bill would correct a Department of Defense rules that increase the burden of finding affordable lodging while on assignment for individual employees rather than the department or service making the assignment. "Military members and Department of … Continue Reading

April 10, 2017

Statement from Senator Mazie Hirono

In consultation with her physician, Senator Mazie Hirono has elected to undergo surgery to implant a lens to improve the vision in her left eye. Because this surgery requires some preparation, Senator Hirono plans to have this procedure during the Congressional recess, which will allow her to get back to work when the Senate is back in session. She looks forward to a speedy recovery. "While I'm disappointed that I won't be able to come home for the current state work period, I'm looking forwar… Continue Reading

April 07, 2017

Hirono Statement on U.S. Airstrikes in Syria

Senator Mazie K. Hirono, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, released the following statement: "The repeated use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime against his own people is an atrocity and breach of international law, and the international community must hold him accountable. "The Civil War in Syria adds layers of complexity in a country and region where there are no easy answers and opportunities for missteps are great. "In light of this, President Trump must present a coh… Continue Reading

April 06, 2017

Hirono Denounces Republican Use of Nuclear Option to Advance Supreme Court Nominee

Senator Mazie K. Hirono released the following statement after Senate Republicans used the nuclear option to advance the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch for the U.S. Supreme Court. "Today, Senate Republicans destroyed a process that has been in place for years to accomplish their goal of confirming a far-right Supreme Court Justice," said Senator Hirono. "Last year, they wouldn't even give President Obama's nominee Merrick Garland a hearing. And today, they changed the rules in order to ram th… Continue Reading

April 04, 2017

Hirono, Senate Democratic Women Take to Senate Floor in Opposition to Judge Gorsuch

Senators Mazie K. Hirono, Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), and Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) took to the Senate floor to talk about the real world consequences that Judge Neil Gorsuch and the Supreme Court's rulings have on working families. From Senator Hirono's remarks: "As we mark Equal Pay Day, I am well aware of the tremendous impact a single justice can have on the lives and right of millions of Americans. Under Chief Justice John Roberts, the Sup… Continue Reading

April 03, 2017

Hirono, Senate Judiciary Democrats Vote to Oppose Gorsuch

Senator Mazie K. Hirono voted in the Senate Judiciary Committee to oppose the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch. Before the vote, Senator Hirono questioned the low bar set for the President's Supreme Court nominee: "We cannot and should not evaluate Judge Gorsuch's nomination based on the low bar President Trump has established for his nominees. Paper credentials are not enough, and we should not give Judge Gorsuch a pass just because he has them. Judge Gorsuch's nomination is the product of a … Continue Reading

April 03, 2017

Hirono Announces $1.4 Million for UH to Support Minority Students in STEM Degree Programs

Senator Mazie K. Hirono announced that the University of Hawaii will receive $1.4 million to help minority students studying science, technology, engineering, and math at UH's seven community colleges to accelerate their transition to four year degree programs. "Minority students face persistent barriers to pursuing STEM careers. This grant will help UH expand the number of Native Hawaiian and other historically underrepresented students pursuing STEM degrees over the next three years," said Se… Continue Reading

March 31, 2017

Hirono Statement on Appointment of New VA Pacific Islands Health Care System Director

Senator Mazie K. Hirono, a member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, released the following statement on the appointment of Jennifer Gutowski to serve as the Director of the Department of Veterans Affairs Pacific Islands Health Care System (VAPIHCS). In her meeting with Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary Dr. David Shulkin before his confirmation hearing, Senator Hirono urged him make it a priority to fill the position given VAPIHCS has lacked a permanent director for over a ye… Continue Reading

March 30, 2017

Hirono Denounces “Unrelenting Republican Crusade” Against Planned Parenthood

Senator Mazie K. Hirono admonished Senate Republicans for their latest attack on Planned Parenthood. Vice President Mike Pence was called to the Senate to break a tied vote to roll back protections that stop states from cutting Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers out of federal Title X grants. From Senator Hirono's remarks: "But if this Congressional Review Act resolution is passed, Planned Parenthood clinics across our country can be prohibited from receiving Title X funding, e… Continue Reading

March 29, 2017

Hirono Opposes "Lousy" Republican Attempt to Stop States from Helping People Save for Retirement

Senator Mazie K. Hirono took to the Senate floor to oppose Republican efforts to get rid of regulations that currently give cities and states the opportunity to set up programs to help more working families save for retirement. Senator Hirono shared the story of a working Hawaii senior struggling to save for retirement. From Senator Hirono's remarks: "For too many working people, saving for retirement isn't automatic or easy. It seems out of reach. But we can't let that stand. The Obama A… Continue Reading

March 28, 2017

Hirono Urges “Loud & Steadfast” Opposition to Gorsuch

On the Senate floor, Senator Mazie K. Hirono called for continued "loud and steadfast" opposition to the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to sit on the Supreme Court. Senator Hirono made her case for her "no" vote, citing Judge Gorsuch's refusal to answer questions about his judicial philosophy that had be addressed by previous Supreme Court nominees. From Senator Hirono's remarks: "It was only through the voices of Americans who were loud and steadfast in confronting Trumpcare that it fai… Continue Reading

March 28, 2017

Hirono: Trump Executive Order Guts Progress on Alternative Energy, Promotes President’s Alternative Facts

Senator Mazie K. Hirono released the following statement on the President's executive order rolling back environmental protections and clean energy resources: "This executive order is clear proof that this Administration is not committed to an 'all of the above' energy strategy. The President continues to promote alternative facts over empirical scientific evidence of climate change and unravel the clean and renewable energy progress that we have made over the past eight years. "While the Pres… Continue Reading

March 27, 2017

Hirono, Warren Call on USA Hockey to Treat Women's National Hockey Team Fairly

Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Mazie K. Hirono, and 11 Senate Democrats raised a number of concerns regarding the inequitable treatment of U.S. Women's National Hockey Team players in a letter to the Executive Director of USA Hockey, Dave Ogrean. The U.S. Women's National Hockey Team reports that USA Hockey, the national governing body for ice hockey in the United States, does not provide "appropriate compensation" or "equitable support" to women athletes. Following faltering negotiations… Continue Reading

March 27, 2017

Hirono to Oppose Nomination of Neil Gorsuch

Senator Mazie K. Hirono, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, announced that she will oppose the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to serve on the Supreme Court. "The real focus and the real heart of this decision lies in the struggles that working families, women, differently-abled, people of color, the LGBTQ community, immigrants, students, seniors, and our native peoples face every day," Senator Hirono said. "These are the everyday Americans who will be impacted by the decisions a Ju… Continue Reading

March 21, 2017

Hirono, Collins Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Prevent Expiration of VA Nursing Home Care Coverage for 35,000 Veterans

Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) introduced the bipartisan Keeping Our Commitment to Disabled Veterans Act to extend an expiring requirement under law that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provide nursing care for certain veterans with service-connected disabilities. Without extension by Congress beyond December 31, 2017, VA would no longer be required to provide this coverage. Around 350 Hawaii veterans at nine public and private facilities across the state… Continue Reading

March 21, 2017

Hirono Grills Gorsuch Over His Refusal to Answer Direct Questions

Senator Mazie K. Hirono, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, grilled Supreme Court Nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch over his refusal to answer direct questions during the second day of nomination hearings. "We've sat here for close to 10 hours now and you have not told us your understanding of cases already decided by the Supreme Court except to say they are law and precedent. You have not told us your view of cases currently before the court. And you will not tell us your view on issues th… Continue Reading

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