Former state Attorney General Doug Chin took the oath of office this morning to officially become the 13th lieutenant governor of the state of Hawaii, replacing Shan Tsutsui who abruptly resigned Wednesday.
Gov. David Ige said he looks forward to “continued collaboration” with Chin, whom he appointed as attorney general in 2015. Ige named First Deputy Attorney General Russell Suzuki to serve as acting Attorney General.
Chin announced earlier today that he would continue to campaign for Congress while agreeing to fill out the remainder of Tsutsui’s term.
“I want to assure the public that I expect to hold myself the highest standards,” Chin said in an interview. “In this case I feel my situation as LG isn’t any different from previous (lieutenant governors) that ran for Congress or ran for governor, or legislators that are running for Congress, or mayors that ran for governor or prosecutors that ran for mayor. I think every elected official out there that is running for office in 2018 is in the same situation and I know we all expect the highest standards from each other.”
The former attorney general in late December entered the race for the U.S. House seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, his first attempt at elected office. He had planned to step down in mid-March as the state’s top law enforcement officer to campaign full time.
“Public service is a privilege. This was not my plan, but it is the order of succession and I am answering a call to serve,” Chin said.
The attorney general is third in a statutory succession line to fill the lieutenant governor position if it becomes vacant, after it is offered to the president of the state Senate and speaker of the House of Representatives. Senate President Ron Kouchi turned down the position Monday when Tsutsui announced his resignation. House Speaker Scott Saiki declined the next day.