Talk:Brian Schatz

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Article title[edit]

I moved the article to just "Brian Schatz" because that's his name commonly used in the Hawaii media and the most recognizeable and also the most concise. Hekerui (talk) 19:47, 19 September 2010 (UTC)

Senate Tenure[edit]

He will actually the senior senator from Hawaii by over a week once the next congress starts. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 173.59.243.213 (talk) 05:44, 29 December 2012 (UTC)

Regardless of the fact that he received his appointment from the Governor of Hawaii on December 26, Schatz's Senate Tenure does not start until he is formerly sworn in by either Biden or Leahy and signs the Senate Oath Book. An event that is tentatively scheduled for 2:00 p.m. E.S.T. on December 27. At that time and ONLY at that time does he become a United States Senator and his seniority begins accruing. So the date in the infobox and in the article for the beginning of his service should reflect December 27. Safiel (talk) 16:56, 27 December 2012 (UTC)

That is simply wrong. You are making an assertion based on no facts whatever. Sources were provided, and if you take the trouble to read them, you will see that the term begins with appointment. -Rrius (talk) 16:58, 27 December 2012 (UTC)
A agree with User:Rrius's statement (although not his/her tone). An oath does not a Senator make.—GoldRingChip 18:11, 27 December 2012 (UTC)
If you check, you will find that the term of an appointed Senator begins on the day of appointment, not the day of oath-taking. Schatz was appointed on Dec 26, so his term began on Dec 26. Agree with Rrius and GoldRingChip above. Canuck89 (talk to me) 19:57, December 27, 2012 (UTC)
I have no citations or personal expertise to back up Safiel but from what I remember happened with Gillibrand, Bennet, Burris, Kaufman, LeMieux, Goodwin, Kirk and Heller, we had to wait until a formal installation before calling him a Senator. I assume it's the same with Schatz. Therequiembellishere (talk) 22:26, 27 December 2012 (UTC)
No, there are many differences. Gillibrand was appointed, but couldn't hold a House and Senate seat simulataneously, so her Senate appointment became effective upon her House resignation. Kirk wasn't appointed, but was elected in a special election. Burris was appointed, but his scenario is exceptional due to the Blagojevich situation. The general rule is if a Senator is appointed, he becomes a Senator on that date regardless of the oath-taking or swearing-in date, such as Goodwin, who was officially sworn in on July 20, but actually became a Senator immediately on his July 16 appointment. One must be careful to make the distinction between the oath (which may be required to execute the powers of an office), and the day one actually took that office. Canuck89 (talk to me) 22:57, December 27, 2012 (UTC)
I will make no further edits to the article. However, until he took the oath, he could not speak in Senate, make motions, serve on a committee or perform any other function of a Senator. His "term" may have started, his pay may have started, but he was NOT a Senator in the full sense of that term until he took that Oath of Office. So perhaps, it would be well to make a distinction between his term starting and his actual entering onto office as a full fledged Senator. Safiel (talk) 00:56, 28 December 2012 (UTC)
That was the distinction I was trying to make. His "term" started the day of his appointment, which made him a member of the Senate. Consider that by the Constitution, all Reps and Senators have their terms start on January 3. However, they often meet a few days later (January 5 or 6) for the official swearing-in ceremonies. Their terms will always start on January 3, but they cannot execute the powers of their offices until they have been officially sworn in. Thus, a swearing-in does not make someone a Rep or Senator if they are already occupying their seat. Canuck89 (what's up?) 03:17, December 28, 2012 (UTC)
I meant Paul Kirk, who was very definitely appointed. And aside from the remaining two examples your struck, my remaining six remain. Therequiembellishere (talk) 01:51, 28 December 2012 (UTC)
Heller, much like Gillibrand, was a member of the House, and could not take his Senate seat until he resigned his House seat. As for the others, much like I mentioned above for Goodwin (appointed July 16 and sworn-in July 20), their Senate terms began from the day of their appointment, not the day of their swearing-in. Canuck89 (what's up?) 03:17, December 28, 2012 (UTC)
  • The US Senate website lists 27 December 2012 as the start of his term. I believe that this is the FINAL word. Senate Revmqo (talk) 05:12, 30 December 2012 (UTC)
    • False, the Congressional Biography list his appointment and there has been lots of evidence given here and elsewhere that a swearing-in is not required for assuming office - some little subwebsite of the senate edited by who knows does not take precedence over the official bio. Hekerui (talk) 09:19, 31 December 2012 (UTC)
      • The Bioguide gives both dates and does not make a statement between them, this website explicitly says what it considers to be the start date. Zero sourced evidenced has been given for the appointment date and to poo-poo the one source either side has found to be "some little subwebsite of the senate edited by who knows" is not our decision to make. Everything else has come down to WP:OR. Therequiembellishere (talk) 21:37, 31 December 2012 (UTC)
Why give the appointment date then? It's mentioned because it's the date of assumption but precedes the formality of oath-taking. Hekerui (talk) 12:02, 2 January 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment I found this pdf on the Senate website that titled "The Term of a Senator--When does it Begin and End?". I don't have time right now to go through it, but someone here might. It seems useful. http://www.senate.gov/reference/resources/pdf/termofasenator.pdf --Joey (talk) 16:57, 2 January 2013 (UTC)
    • I've read it and cited it at various places. I've also emailed the Senate Historical Office and received a response from an Assistant Historian there, which says she will check with the Senate Disbursing Office. That clearly signals to me that she also agrees that salary and term are in lockstep, and since the SHO is in charge of all of the data being used to support the claims made here, I am fairly confident that the recent changes to use oath date will be reversed. -Rrius (talk) 17:22, 2 January 2013 (UTC)
    • I'm with Rrius on this one. Federal statutes regarding the appointment of senators are very clear that the term of appointed Senators begins on the date of appointment. We have the official source in the form of Governor Abercrombie's certificate of appointment, which clearly is dated December 26. The Senate has been wrong in the past on the dates terms begin. We shall see what reponse the Historical Office provides.DCmacnut<> 17:48, 3 January 2013 (UTC)
      • For additional reference supporting the date of appointment as the start of a term, I'd like to point folks to the Bioguide article for Tim Scott. It clearly states he was appointed on January 2, and that the appointment was effective upon his resignation from the House on that date. The fact that he took the oath of office today has no bearing on his term having started during the 112th Congress.DCmacnut<> 18:05, 3 January 2013 (UTC)
        • TLDR. It seems to me, however, that the most logical course of action would be to use the formal receipt by the Secretary of the Senate of the certificate of appointment of Schatz as a United States Senator as the term start date. That's when the U.S. Senate (which, pursuant to the Constitution, determines the eligibility of its own members) formally acknowledges the State Governor's (Neil Abercrombie, in this case) appointment of the U.S. Senator-designate. At the point in time where the Senate accepts the certificate of appointment and credentials of the Senator-designate and thereby declares an intent to swear-in the new member (by scheduling a formal administration of the oath), the Senate term-proper begins, so it seems to me. Take, for example, the instance of Senators-elect. They assume office, customarily, at 12:00 Noon ET on January 3rd following the election. They assume office at this time, upon the expiration of their predecessors' terms, whether or not they've taken the oath (although they cannot, from a Constitutional point-of-view, vote or otherwise execute the Constitutional duties of Senate membership until they do). But they hold the office regardless, whether the difference between assumption of office and administration of oath be minutes, hours, or days. A conclusion can be made, thus, that holding an office and executing it's duties are two different things, although the difference is rarely noted, since the time difference between the assumption of office and administration of oath is usually miniscule. Barack Obama assumed the Presidency at 12:00 Noon, despite not completing the oath until 12:05 PM. This suggests that a federal office can be constitutionally held before the administration of the oath (although, like I said above, duties cannot be executed until the oath is administered). Tyrol5 [Talk] 19:46, 3 January 2013 (UTC)

To say that he becomes a senator on the day of his appointment is to say that the president-elect becomes president on the day of his election. The 27th is the correct date. — Preceding unsigned comment added by WCquick-quick (talkcontribs) 21:39, 3 January 2013 (UTC)

There is no election in an appointment so the comparison is invalid. Hekerui (talk) 21:42, 3 January 2013 (UTC)
Hekerui is right. Appointments to fill vacancies and elections to fill vacancies are completely different than those elected in a general election. 2 USC 36 states explicitly that the term of appointed Senators begins on the date of their appointment, except in rare circumstances. The Senate recently updated the chronological listing which states December 26. The Bioguide says December 26. We have debated this issue backwards and forwards for years and the consensus has always been that the date of appointment guides when the term starts. I'm going to be bold and change the article to December 26.DCmacnut<> 14:09, 4 January 2013 (UTC)

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