Every couple of years, we get the pleasant task of endorsing Joe Souki for the 8th District Hawaii House of Representatives seat.
This year, we get to endorse and congratulate him for once again being the speaker of the state House of Representatives. He is an amazing man and legislator, most adept at building coalitions as he did to wrest the speakership away from Calvin Say.
An endorsement of Souki can probably be done best just by quoting from past endorsements:
1. He is that rarest of birds a Neighbor Island legislator who was elected speaker of the state House. "It should go without saying that Souki is a practical politician, equally adept at gaining public support at election time and finding ways to work measures through the Capitol maze."
2. What we like most about Souki is that he is everybody's representative. As we wrote when we endorsed him in 2008, "Mr. Souki is known for even helping constituents with views he doesn't support he'll give advice on the best way to get your ideas heard. He is simply Maui's gem and takes seriously his role of representing all of his constituents."
3. He will work with anyone to benefit his constituents. We remember former Republican Gov. Linda Lingle thanking Souki and Sen. J. Kalani English for their parts in helping craft an economic stimulus plan during her tenure.
We've referred to him as the best legislator in the state, and it is hard to imagine anyone who could do a better job as speaker. In conclusion, we'd sum up by using a couple of lines from another old editorial about Souki:
"He isn't flashy. He's far from charismatic. Joe Souki is a legislator who knows his job and does it. Go get 'em, Joe."
We'd urge voters to send Souki back for another term as the representative from state House District 8.
* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.