30 Minutes With the Most Powerful Man In Hawaii

Chad Blair/Civil Beat

Dan Inouye was so busy in Washington in 2010 that he says he only made six trips to the islands — even though he was running for re-election.

So, when his press secretary put out an alert on Tuesday that Hawaii's senior senator would hold a "media availability" in his Honolulu office Thursday, print, TV, wire and online reporters dutifully showed up (even if it meant hauling all their equipment through security at the Prince Kuhio Federal Building).

For 30 minutes Inouye quietly answered questions on political rhetoric, gun violence, threats against congressmen, bipartisanship, earmarks, filibusters, the Akaka bill, the power struggle at the state House and the meaning of last year's election.

For their part, reporters genuflected and basked in the aura of the most powerful man in Hawaii politics.

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