Rep. Joseph M. Souki resigned as Speaker of the Hawaii House of Representatives Thursday.
In a letter to his fellow House members, Souki said, “There were some disappointments this session such as the failure to pass the Compassionate Aid in Dying and the immunity for our lifeguards bills. With the dynamics in this legislature, we were also unable to agree with the Senate on funding to complete Honolulu’s rail system. I regret that on these issues we were not able to do the work of the people.”
Souki was re-elected as Speaker of the House in January 2013. He previously served as Speaker from 1993 to 1999, and Speaker Emeritus from 2000 to 2013. He also served as Chair of the Committee on Finance, and most recently as Chair of the Committee on Transportation.
“Five years ago I did not seek this position, but was asked to lead this body in order to bring all members’ voices to our deliberations,” he wrote. “I hope that to some extent I was able to do that.”
Souki, a Democrat, has served in the Hawaii State House since 1982. He represents the 8th district, Kahakuloa, Waihee, Waiehu, Puuohala, Wailuku and Waikapu on the island of Maui where he was born and raised.