Lessons from the ledge – Power Flow

The question of power flow at the Hawaii State legislature is not as simple as it may appear at first glance. While most will assume that power is concentrated at the top with the Senate President and Speaker of the House, most students of government will say that actually the most powerful figures in any legislative bodies are the “money chairs”. In the case of Hawaii this would be Senator Donovan Dela Cruz and Representative Sylvia Luke, Chair of Ways and Means and Finance, respectively. And, upon just a small amount of reflection this would seem reasonable as money is central to almost all decisions.