Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Brian Schatz-- Abercrombie Makes The Best Possible Appointment To The Senate


A new progressive U.S. senator

When Daniel Inouye died last week, anyone would have predicted New Dem Colleen Hanabusa would have been appointed by Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie to succeed him. It's what Inouye is reported to have wanted. When we looked at the situation here at DWT a week ago, Lt. Governor Brian Schatz seemed like too good of an idea to even give serious consideration. It looked to me that it would be the only way to keep reactionary corporate whore Ed Case-- who was gearing up to run for Hanabusa's seat-- out of Congress.

But I didn't give Governor Abercrombie enough credit. He gave Schatz the appointment the day after Chrtistmas. The state Democratic Party had given Abercrombie 3 names to pick from: Schatz, himself a former chairman of the state party; Hanabusa; and Esther Kiaaina, the deputy director of the state's Department of Land and Natural Resources. He made the right decision, though not everyone in the Establishment thinks so.
"Senator Inouye conveyed his final wish to Governor Abercrombie," said Jennifer Sabas, Inouye's chief of staff. "While we are very disappointed that it was not honored, it was the Governor's decision to make."

Abercrombie said Inouye's views and wishes weighed on his decision-making process, but "no one and nothing is preordained." He said the possibility of a special election to fill Hanabusa's seat weighed on him in choosing Inouye's successor.

"Sometimes you have to set aside personal considerations in order to look for the good of the whole," the governor, a former congressman, said at a press conference.

Schatz said he would board a flight to Washington sometime this evening, with hopes of being sworn into office sometime on Thursday afternoon. The Senate reconvenes on Thursday to take up the urdent business of reaching a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff on Jan. 1.
Just as important as keeping Case out of Congress is the fact that Schatz, who at 40 will be the youngest member of the Senate until Chris Murphy (D-CT) is sworn in in January, is also a progressive and a reformer with a great record on environmental issues. Hawaii's Senate delegation, Schatz and Mazie Hirono, is likely to turn out to be the best in the whole country.

UPDATE: New Dem Hanabusa May Retaliate With A Run For Governor

Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, who had already, at least figuratively, measured the drapes in Daniel Inouye's office, is telling friends she may get even with Neil Abercrombie by running against him in the 2014 primary. She claims Inouye staffers are encouraging her, unable to comprehend that in death Inouye couldn't name his own successor, the pro-corporate Hanabusa and that Abercrombie was able to appoint a progressive. The other aggrieved party in this is the even worse corporate whore, perennial candidate-- and arch reactionary-- Ed Case. He's likely to run against either Abercrombie or Schatz in 2014 and against Schatz again in 2016.

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At 6:26 PM, Blogger Phil Perspective said...

Schatz said he would board a flight to Washington sometime this evening, with hopes of being sworn into office sometime on Thursday afternoon.

According to the Twitter machine, the flight he'll be boarding will be Air Force One. Lucky guy!!

At 9:24 PM, Anonymous ap215 said...

Great Choice Gov Abercrombie!


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