Heard on the Hill: What’s in a Name?

Posted March 4, 2011 at 4:43pm

There’s a new Senator on top. Now that Sen. Daniel Akaka has announced plans to retire, the Senate roll call will be forever changed.

Sen. Lamar Alexander will be the first name on the alphabetical list after the Hawaii Democrat retires at the end of his term.

For years, Akaka’s name has been heard on C-SPAN several times a day as the Senate clerk conducts quorum calls. But now that Akaka is leaving, the Tennessee Republican will get that distinction, assuming no one with a last name beginning with the letter “A” is elected to the Senate in the coming cycle.

“Sen. Alexander doesn’t usually get involved in primaries, but he might have to reconsider if former Lt. Gov. [James] Aiona and Gov. [Neil] Abercrombie decide to run,” jokes Nick Simpson, spokesman for the Senate Republican Conference.