Akaka Not Running for Re-election
Sen. Daniel Akaka, who has served Hawaii as senator and as a represenative for 35 years, announced today he is not running for re-election next year, when his term expires.
“As many of you can imagine, it was a very difficult decision for me. However, I feel that the end of this Congress is the right time for me to step aside. It has been a great honor and privilege to serve the people of Hawaii,” Akaka said in a news release.
Akaka serves on the Committes on Veterans’ Affairs, Armed Services, Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, Indian Affairs and Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs.
Hawaii’s long-running senator worked hard for the past 10 years to pass the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act, often referred to as the Akaka Bill. The law intended to give Native Hawaiians a soverign government. It did not pass out of the U.S. Senate in the last legislative session.
“I have always strived to serve the people with much love and aloha, never forgetting my humble beginnings, and it is my hope that they, too, will continue this tradition,” he stated. “We must never forget that we, as political leaders, work for the people of Hawaii and not the special interests.
“Finally, I would like to thank Senator Dan Inouye. I will forever be grateful for his friendship and steadfast support.”
President Barack Obama also released a statement about Akaka’s retirement.
“Danny Akaka answered the call to serve right after high school by joining the Army Corps of Engineers during World War II. When he returned to Honolulu, he continued to serve the people of Hawaii as an educator before embarking on more than three decades of distinguished service in both houses of Congress.
“Danny spent his career fighting for our troops, veterans and their families and for the rights of Native Hawaiians. He worked tirelessly to reform Wall Street and to make sure that consumers and small business owners are treated fairly in our system. His voice in the Senate will be missed. Michelle and I would like to join the people of Hawaii in saying ‘mahalo’ to Danny for his lifetime of service and offer both him and Millie our best wishes for the future.”