Governor offers support for Akaka Bill

Gov. Linda Lingle announced yesterday she will meet with senators in Washington, D.C. on June 5 and 6 in support of a bill Sen. Daniel Akaka, D-Hawai‘i, wrote, a press release from her office states.

The governor’s visit is two days prior to the U.S. Senate’s anticipated vote on a cloture petition on S.147, the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act, also known as the Akaka Bill.

Gov. Lingle made the decision to go to Washington at the written request of Office of Hawaiian Affairs chair Haunani Apoliona and after a telephone conversation with Senator Daniel Akaka on Friday, the press release states.

While in Washington, Lingle plans to meet with Republican senators to discuss the importance of the Akaka Bill to Hawai‘i, including what the bill does and what it does not do, and to clarify flaws in a recent report by the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

Earlier this week, Lingle sent a letter to all 55 Republican senators and the one independent seeking their support for the bill, the release states.

“After years of hard work, this is a critical time to gain passage of the Akaka Bill in the U.S. Senate,” Lingle said.

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