Hawaii's delegation lauds president's speech


POSTED: Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Hawaii's all-Democratic congressional delegation gave President Barack Obama a big thumbs up yesterday, calling his speech to a joint session of Congress bold and inspiring.

;[Preview] Hawaii DC and Local Reaction To President's Address

How Hawaii representatives and local business men reacted to the President's address.

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When asked his reaction, Dan Inouye, Hawaii's senior senator, exclaimed: “;What a speech!”;

“;It was great and I don't say that too often. At a time when our nation needed a little boost and some optimism and some feeling of hope, I think he succeeded,”; Inouye said.

“;I think he made it clear that times were bad and he was being candid, but he also made it clear that we are not quitters and that was just the medicine the doctor ordered,”; said Inouye, chairman of the Senate Appropriations committee.

Sen. Dan Akaka also had fulsome praise and was in complete agreement with Obama's hourlong speech.

“;We will continue to work with the president to improve financial stability and address the housing crisis,”; Akaka said in a written statement.

“;We must reform the financial services regulatory oversight system to protect and empower consumers and prevent future economic disruptions like this current crisis,”; Akaka vowed.

Rep. Mazie Hirono said the Obama speech made her proud because the president “;was honest with the people.”;

“;We are going to tell them where the money is going and there will be true accountability. ... And to say that we are not a country that tortures; I don't think that could have come out of President Bush's mouth,”; Hirono said.

Neil Abercrombie, Hawaii's other representative, noted that the Obama budget will include the cost of the war in Iraq along with other military expenditures. The Bush administration had separated the war costs, serving to make the budget appear smaller than it really was, Abercrombie said.

“;Tonight, we heard the administration's outline for a budget to cut the deficit in half by 2013, a budget that doesn't rely on gimmicks to hide expenditures,”; Abercrombie said.

“;We are trying to breathe life into a nearly dead economy and then prevent years of runaway Bush administration spending from bankrupting the country,”; he added. “;It is a tough assignment. We can do it, but it will demand that we put aside partisan games and work together.”;