Section 12. Each house shall be the judge of the elections, returns and qualifications of its own members and shall have, for misconduct, disorderly behavior or neglect of duty of any member, power to punish such member by censure or, upon a two-thirds vote of all the members to which such house is entitled, by suspension or expulsion of such member. Each house shall choose its own officers, determine the rules of its proceedings and keep a journal. The ayes and noes of the members on any question shall, at the desire of one-fifth of the members present, be entered upon the journal.

Twenty days after a bill has been referred to a committee in either house, the bill may be recalled from such committee by the affirmative vote of one-third of the members to which such house is entitled.

Every meeting of a committee in either house or of a committee comprised of a member or members from both houses held for the purpose of making decision on matters referred to the committee shall be open to the public.

By rule of its proceedings, applicable to both houses, each house shall provide for the date by which all bills to be considered in a regular session shall be introduced. [Ren and am Const Con 1978 and election Nov 7, 1978; am HB 1947 (1984) and election Nov 6, 1984]


Cross References


Standards of conduct for legislators, see chapter 84.


Attorney General Opinions


Right of recall cannot be nullified by rules of the legislature such as motion to table. Att. Gen. Op. 76-5.

The provisions of article III, 10 apply only when the legislature acts as a whole or when the senate is acting on judicial nominations, and do not limit the prerogatives conferred upon each house by this section to choose its officers or amend its rules. Att. Gen. Op. 05-1.


Case Notes


Each house judge of elections, see similar provision in 15 of Organic Act, construed and compared with provisions of Hawaiian Constitution. 14 H. 145; 15 H. 323.

"Each house shall be the judge of the elections" construed; the court, not the legislature, is final arbiter in election contest, pursuant to article II, 7 of the Constitution. 51 H. 354, 461 P.2d 221.

Power of each house to judge the qualifications of its members does not include power to construe provisions on qualifications contrary to construction by court. 52 H. 251, 473 P.2d 872.

Violation of own rules by legislature will not be inquired into in absence of a constitutional mandate or unless it constitutes a deprivation of constitutionally guaranteed rights. 58 H. 25, 564 P.2d 135.



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