December 26th, 2012

The appointment of U.S. Sen.-designee Brian Schatz to fill the vacancy left by the death of U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye leaves a vacancy here in Hawaii in the lieutenant governor’s office.

According to the state constitution, the next in line to the state’s No. 2 executive is the state Senate president, who must make a decision “promptly,” Gov. Neil Abercrombie said.

Senate President Shan Tsutsui (D, Waihee-Wailuku-Kuhului) issued a statement Wednesday:

“I understand that by law, as Senate President, I would be next in line to succeed Lieutenant Governor Schatz.  I plan to discuss this prospect with the Governor and my family before making a decision.”

If he ultimately turns it down, next in line is the House speaker, followed by the state Attorney General and then state budget director.

House Speaker Calvin Say (D, Palolo-St. Louis Heights-Kaimuki) said he has not given much consideration to the possibility of succeeding Schatz.

In an interview, Say said:

“I’ll wait to what the senator has to say, but I haven’t made any statements. … Let’s wait and see until I get a call.”

8 Responses to “Succession”

  1. Chicken Grease:

    Great decision by Abercrombie across thje board — no need mess w/any “special election.” (yes, Office of Elections . . . you rest and, um, try to improve ya’llself ’til the next election. We won’t be needing your help right now.)

    To Hanabusa, Tulsi, whoever else was in this “ask-to-be-Senator,” no be habuts. Be lucky you get job and do the job for which you were mst recently elected.

  2. David S. Nishimura:

    Young Tsutsui should hold on to the Senate Presidency and from there upgrade to higher positions. Promising. Let Say take the LtGov position so he can be the next Palolo Govenor after Neil’s one term. OMGolly, better not developed as such!

  3. Jordan:

    If Shan Tsutsui turns it down, this would be a graceful way for Calvin Say to exit the house and save face after the leadership struggle.

  4. kanani b.:

    now that shan is out of the senate, i foresee a not so smooth re-organization in the senate. not enough support for kim to take over but maybe not enough audacity from the others to step up. good luck to them.

  5. ohiaforest3400:

    He took it, which makes sense when you consider that hard work, policy, and herding cats are not his thing. This way he gets better retirement credit, gets a statewide job without doing anything, and can spend 2 years prepping for a run for LG with Neil (if the Short One runs again and wins the primary, not a sure thing on either count just now).

  6. Hawaiino:

    Tsutsui was an “accidental” Senate President, now he’s the accidental LG..looks like he’s the next Mazie!

  7. Goober:

    Those without breath take care of their own.
    That’s how I know.

  8. Goober:

    Governor Abercrombie is playing chess. Get rid of all those who are pawns and he has a chance of getting re-elected. Take away the knights and rooks.
    Schatz may not get re-elected to the Senate and hannabusa probably will. Senator Inouye will get his last wish.

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