Press Releases

April 18, 2013

HAWAII DELEGATION COMMENDS CONFIRMATION OF DERRICK KAHALA WATSON TO U.S. DISTRICT COURT OF HAWAII

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono, Senator Brian Schatz, Representative Colleen Hanabusa, and Representative Tulsi Gabbard commended the Senate confirmation today of Derrick Kahala Watson, President Obama's nominee to the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii. Watson has served since 2007 as Assistant United States Attorney in the District of Hawaii. A 1984 graduate of Kamehameha Schools, Watson will be the sole Native Hawaiian currently serving on the federal bench and only th… Continue Reading


April 18, 2013

KEY PARTS OF SENATOR HIRONO'S VISIT USA ACT INCLUDED IN IMMIGRATION REFORM LEGISLATION

Washington, D.C. - Honolulu Civil Beat reports today how the immigration bill introduced this week includes key provisions from Senator Mazie K. Hirono's VISIT USA Act, a bill she introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives that would make it easier for foreign tourists to visit and spend money in the United States. Hirono has been a long-time advocate for changes to foreign visitor visas and the visa waiver system that would increase foreign tourism and create jobs. You can read the story… Continue Reading


April 17, 2013

SENATOR MAZIE K. HIRONO STATEMENT ON SENATE’S FAILURE TO ADOPT BIPARTISAN BACKGROUND CHECK, GUN TRAFFICKING LEGISLATION

Washington, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono released the following statement after the Senate failed to adopt bipartisan measures that would have closed a number of background check loopholes and fought gun trafficking: "I'm very disappointed that - even in the wake of the Newtown tragedy - basic improvements to our background check system and gun trafficking laws failed to obtain the votes needed to move forward in the Senate. This fight is not over. I know that the people of Hawaii and the res… Continue Reading


April 17, 2013

SENATOR HIRONO STATEMENT ON IMMIGRATION BILL

Washington, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono released the following statement today reacting to the bipartisan immigration bill unveiled by the Senate Gang of Eight. "I appreciate the Gang of Eight's hard work over many months to move us closer to achieving comprehensive immigration reform. I look forward to reviewing the details of the bill, particularly the provisions that are intended to mitigate the harm to families caused by eliminating the sibling category of visas, and the provisions that … Continue Reading


April 12, 2013

FIVE STORIES YOU MAY HAVE MISSED FROM SENATOR HIRONO’S WEEK

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- It was another busy legislative week for Senator Mazie Hirono in Washington. Check out five things you may have missed from Senator Hirono's week: 1) WATCH: Hawaii News Now profiles Senator Hirono's conversation with Admiral Samuel Locklear, PACOM Commander, about the escalating North Korea situation at Tuesday's Senate Armed Services Committee hearing-- http://youtu.be/xHofhEUZTmk 2) The Hawaii Tribune-Herald and media organizations throughout Hawaii profiled the… Continue Reading


April 11, 2013

SENATOR HIRONO UNVEILS BIPARTISAN LEGISLATION THAT FIXES RESTRICTIVE VISA LAWS FOR HONG KONG VISITORS, AIMS TO BOOST HONG KONG TOURISM IN HAWAII

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Senator Mazie Hirono unveiled new bipartisan legislation that would cut government red tape that makes it more difficult for tourists from Hong Kong to come to Hawaii. Republican Senator Orrin Hatch (UT) is the lead Republican sponsor of the bill in the Senate. "This bipartisan legislation is one example of how just a small legislative change can have a big impact on Hawaii's economy," said Hirono. "Right now, people in Hong Kong can visit more than 140 countries and territ… Continue Reading


April 10, 2013

SENATOR MAZIE K. HIRONO STATEMENT ON PRESIDENT OBAMA'S BUDGET

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- After President Obama released a budget this afternoon that prioritizes creating jobs by investing in transportation infrastructure, early childhood education, and pursuing a clean energy future, Senator Mazie K. Hirono released the following statement: The President's budget has a number of provisions that would help create sustainable economic growth and jobs. His commitment to investing in transportation infrastructure is one that Hawaii is already benefitting from, as h… Continue Reading


April 09, 2013

SENATOR MAZIE K. HIRONO HONORS MEMORY OF DANIEL K. INOUYE, HOSTS GRAND TEA MASTER OF JAPAN TO PERFORM CENTURIES-OLD TEA CEREMONY FOR WORLD PEACE

Washington, D.C. -- Senator Mazie K. Hirono hosted Dr. Genshitsu Sen, the fifteenth generation Urasenke Grand Tea Master of Japan, as he performed a centuries-old tea ceremony for world peace. Senator Inouye had intended to host the ceremony before he passed away late last year, and today's event honored the late Senator. "Nothing could be more important than the U.S. Japan relationship," Senator Hirono said at the ceremony. "It is this friendship and alliance that has produced peace in the Asi… Continue Reading


April 09, 2013

SENATOR MAZIE K. HIRONO QUESTIONS U.S. PACIFIC COMMANDER ABOUT CHINA’S ENGAGEMENT IN NORTH KOREA THREAT DURING SENATE ARMED SERVICES HEARING

Washington, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono questioned Admiral Samuel J. Locklear III, Commander of the United States Pacific Command, about China's engagement in the ramping up of tensions from North Korea during a hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee. "Do you foresee some action on part of the Chinese either publicly or behind the scenes to stop or reduce the level of provocations from North Korea?" Hirono asked Admiral Locklear. "Well, I think there's been statements by both Xi Jin… Continue Reading


April 08, 2013

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: ARMY MEDIA SPOTLIGHTS SENATOR HIRONO'S SCHOFIELD TOUR

On Friday, Senator Hirono wrapped up a week-long tour where she explained to Hawaii residents how her Senate work on national security issues and immigration reform impacts them. Below reads Army media coverage of her visit to Oahu's Schofield Barracks: By Sgt. Matthew Ryan, 25th Infantry Division http://www.dvidshub.net/news/104723/schofield-barracks-receives-distinguished-guest#.UWMUtZPvuCn SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Students and faculty waited patiently with leis and warm welcomes at the… Continue Reading


April 03, 2013

SENATOR MAZIE K. HIRONO TOURS SCHOOL AT SCHOFIELD BARRACKS RECENTLY AWARDED $26 MILLION FROM DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE, MEETS EDUCATORS

Honolulu - Senator Mazie K. Hirono visited Hale Kula Elementary School, which recently was awarded a $26.6 million federal grant from the Department of Defense for facility improvements to address overcrowding. Hale Kula, a public school located on Oahu's Schofield Barracks Army Installation, serves a student population comprised of 98% military dependent children. "It was a pleasure to meet the dedicated educators at Hale Kula Elementary who are making a difference for Hawaii's military famili… Continue Reading


April 03, 2013

SENATOR MAZIE K. HIRONO DISCUSSES IMMIGRATION REFORMS' POTENTIAL IMPACTS ON HAWAII AT ROUNDTABLE WITH LOCAL IMMIGRATION ADVOCATES, ACTIVISTS AND PROFESSIONALS

Honolulu - Senator Mazie K. Hirono hosted a roundtable discussion with community leaders about how comprehensive immigration reform could impact Hawaii. Among the 20 attendees included immigration law specialists, children's advocates, philanthropic organizations and immigration justice activists. The meeting was the first of a series of events this week where Hirono will discuss how her work in the Senate impacts Hawaii residents. "After listening to these local immigration experts, I was stru… Continue Reading


March 29, 2013

SENATOR MAZIE K. HIRONO ANNOUNCES FORMER INOUYE AIDE ALAN YAMAMOTO WILL LEAD HAWAII OPERATION

Washington, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono today announced her state staff, including formerSenator Inouye aide Alan Yamamoto as her State Director. "While my staff works directly for me -- they are working first and foremost for the people of Hawaii. This strong team will help me bring Hawaii's voice to Washington as my eyes and ears in the islands. Alan is an experienced leader in our state who knows how to get results for Hawaii. Throughout his career in the public and private sectors, Alan … Continue Reading


March 25, 2013

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: EDITORIAL IN TODAY'S NEW YORK TIMES HIGHLIGHTS HIRONO'S FIGHT FOR FAMILY IMMIGRATION

In today's New York Times, the paper's editorial board highlights Senator Mazie K. Hirono's fight to strengthen and preserve the family based immigration system and argues that immigration reform should aim to protect and unite families: Mazie Hirono, Democrat of Hawaii, who led the hearing, spoke movingly of her own experience immigrating to Honolulu as a young girl, and yet joined other witnesses in explaining how the system falls short: she noted that it treats women unequally - many who a… Continue Reading


March 22, 2013

AFTER URGING FAA TO SPARE KALAELOA AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL TOWER FROM SEQUESTRATION CUTS, SENATOR HIRONO APPLAUDS AGENCY’S DECISION TO KEEP TOWER OPEN

Washington, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono applauded the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) decision today to spare Kalaeloa Airport Air Traffic Control Tower on Oahu from the chopping block. After the FAA identified the tower as one that would be closed due to sequestration, Senator Hirono sent the agency a letter urging them to keep the tower open because of the vital role it plays to Coast Guard operations and air safety. "This is great news for Hawaii. Earlier this month, I made the ca… Continue Reading


March 21, 2013

HOUSE PASSES MEASURE CHAMPIONED BY SENATOR HIRONO TO RESTORE TUITION ASSISTANCE FOR SERVICE MEMBERS, LEGISLATION NOW AWAITS PRESIDENT’S SIGNATURE

Washington, D.C. - The House of Representatives approved legislation championed by Senator Mazie K. Hirono to protect tuition assistance for military service members from cuts. As a part of sequestration and budget constraints, the Marines, Army, Air Force and Coast Guard recently announced the suspension of military tuition assistance for students serving in the military. Hirono was an original cosponsor of the legislation that passed the Senate as a bipartisan amendment to the Consolidated an… Continue Reading


March 20, 2013

HIRONO COSPONSORED BILL TO REINSTATE TUITION ASSISTANCE FOR SERVICE MEMBERS PASSES SENATE, HEADS TO HOUSE FOR APPROVAL

Washington, D.C. - Today, the U.S. Senate approved legislation cosponsored by Senator Mazie K. Hirono to protect tuition assistance for military service members from cuts. As a part of sequestration and budget constraints, the Marines, Army, Air Force and Coast Guard recently announced the termination of military tuition assistance for new students. If passed by the House of Representatives, today's bipartisan amendment to the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act that funds the… Continue Reading


March 20, 2013

MAZIE K. HIRONO, SIX OTHER SENATORS URGE GANG OF EIGHT TO MAKE IT EASIER FOR FAMILIES TO BE REUNITED THROUGH IMMIGRATION REFORM

Washington, D.C. -- Today, U.S. Senators Mazie K. Hirono (HI), Barbara Boxer (CA), Sherrod Brown (OH), Tom Harkin (IA), Brian Schatz (HI), Al Franken (MN), and Elizabeth Warren (MA) urged the Gang of Eight currently drafting immigration reform legislation to prioritize family reunification and clear the backlogs of family visas in a letter today. The senators specifically urged their colleagues to keep categories that allow for immigrants to call their brothers and sisters and adult children to … Continue Reading


March 19, 2013

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: NEW YORK TIMES, OTHER NATIONAL OUTLETS PROFILE SENATOR HIRONO'S JUDICIARY HEARING ON WOMEN, FAMILIES IN IMMIGRATION REFORM

The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Houston Chronicle and a number of others outlets profiled Senator Hirono's Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on how immigration reform should address the needs of women and families. An immigrant herself, Hirono took the rare opportunity as a freshman senator to chair a full committee hearing and argued for reforms that reunify families, cut backlogs and provide basic protections for immigrants. You can watch video of Senator Hirono's opening stateme… Continue Reading


March 18, 2013

MAZIE K. HIRONO CHAIRS SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE HEARING ON WOMEN, FAMILIES IN IMMIGRATION REFORM

Washington, D.C. -- Senator Mazie K. Hirono chaired a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on how immigration reform should address the needs of women and families this afternoon. As an immigrant who came to this country with her family as a small child, Hirono made the case for reforms that offer basic protections to immigrants, cut backlogs and make the family immigration system stronger. "I know firsthand that immigration is a women's issue and a family issue," Hirono said in her opening state… Continue Reading

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