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Sen. Inouye sworn in for ninth term

Sen. Daniel Inouye is sworn in to his ninth term in the U.S. Senate by Vice President Joe Biden. Inouye wife, Irene Hirano, looks on. (Photo courtesy of the Office of Sen. Inouye)

Karin Stanton | Hawaii 24/7 Editor

Sen. Daniel Inouye was sworn into his ninth 6-year term Wednesday and remains the longest-serving U.S. Senate incumbent.

Inouye was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1959 and to the U.S. Senate in 1963.

Inouye was escorted into the Senate chamber by Sen. Daniel K. Akaka. The oath of office was administered by Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr.

“As I begin my ninth term, I’m reminded of how excited I was in 1963, when the people of Hawaii first entrusted me with the responsibility of representing them in the United States Senate. That excitement and anticipation is still alive, however, this is also a moment of reflection and memories,” the Democrat said.

“The faces I saw when I first walked down that aisle to take the oath of office are now a part of history. Mike Mansfield, Richard Russell, Everett Dirksen and many, many others. I learned a lot from those lions of the Senate and I am prepared to tackle the challenges that await me at the start of the 112th Congress,” he said.

“I wish to thank the people of Hawaii for allowing me the privilege of representing them. It is a duty I take very seriously and one that I approach with the same passion and vigor that I brought to Washington many years ago. The season of campaign promises is over and after nearly half a century of service in the Senate I can assure you with great confidence that meaningful change is most often the product of bipartisan effort” Inouye said.

“There is so much work to be done at a critical time for Hawaii. We have new leaders in state and county government and I will continue to collaborate with them and listen to the needs of my constituents to ensure my best efforts are focused on what Hawaii needs most. The economic times have been tough, but we are moving toward a better future and we will build a stronger Hawaii, one that will endure for generations to come,” he said.

Inouye retains his chairmanship of the Senate Appropriations Committee.

“It was my honor to escort my good friend Dan Inouye as he was sworn in to his ninth term serving our country in the U.S. Senate,” Akaka said. “Senator Inouye’s lifetime of service and sacrifice is renowned in our nation’s capitol, and I was proud be part of this special moment in the history of our state and the country.”

Also Wednesday, Democratic Rep. Mazie Hirono began her third, two-year term representing Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional District.

Also sworn in was Democratic Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, who defeated incumbent Republican Rep. Charles Djou for the 1st Congressional District in November.

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