Political Radar


July 18th, 2013

State Sen. Will Espero is expected to announce on Sunday whether he will enter the Democratic primary in urban Honolulu's 1st Congressional District.

U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa is vacating the district to challenge U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz in the Democratic primary for Senate.

Honolulu City Councilman Stanley Chang is the only Democrat so far to commit to the CD1 race.

Espero is scheduled to be joined at the state Capitol by supporters and lawmakers such as state Rep. Rida Cabanilla, state Sen. Clarence Nishihara, Honolulu City Councilman Ron Menor, and former state Rep. Romeo Mindo.

Espero, who was appointed to the state House by Gov. Ben Cayetano in 1999, was elected to the House in 2000. He was elected to the Senate in 2002.

12 Responses to “Primed”

  1. Goober:

    Chickens can now be legal to

  2. galekaminari:

    Sen. Espero works for D.R. Horton, developer of the Hoopili project which takes a sizable portion of the State's prime agricultural lands for development. Reportedly, that bush area where the Phase I of the train is being built is Horton's Hoopili development area. Why would we elect someone who works for Horton? Sen. Espero must not have noted Nestor Garcia's catastrophic fall.

  3. Especially Incognito:

    Horton and the Who?

    Seems that the Filipino community
    is for their own country persons.

  4. ohiaforest3400:

    So far, the CD1 field appears to be occupied by dumb and dumber.

  5. Kolea:

    In 2006, there were 11 candidates in the 2nd Congressional Democratic primary. It forced debate organizers to invent a new format, "political speed dating" in order to allow the audience a chance to hear equally from all the candidate

    s. What where the dynamics in that race which elicited so many candidates? And why have so few candidates made sounds about entering this race? Is election day just too far away? Or is something else at work here to dampen interest?

    Now that Ed Case has taken himself out of consideration, the only other "big" name I can think of is Mufi Hanneman. I could see where some Dems might be holding back until Mufi makes his intentions clear.

    So far, I am not impressed by the names I have heard mentioned as possible candidates.

  6. Goober:

    Francis is just a name.

    Not impressed either with an old comment
    and history lesson.
    Seems one should get the No Dick Award.

  7. galekaminari:

    Kolea, I think that Mark Takai's ambitions to run for something, anything, other than his current seat, have caused others to withhold announcing their plans to run for CD1 out of courtesy, even though it is plain that there is zero support for Rep. Takai's running for anything other than maybe his House seat.

    Kudos to Sen. David Ige for ignoring Rep. Takai's effort to hog the Anti-Abercrombie gubernatorial field and announce anyway. Regardless of whether one wants the current Governor to be re-elected or not, at least Sen. Ige showed some, um, Courage.

    Others in the Legislature who are interested in seeking CD1 should form their committees and announce, regardless of Rep. Takai's hog-cheese approach which is gumming up the works. If he no longer wishes to be in the House, Rep. Takai should remember that retirement is also an honorable option, especially now that the Dissident Faction's majority is stable. This lengthy attempt to eclipse the field speaks volumes regarding Rep. Takai and makes me think that the many critics who came out of the woodwork at the floating of his higher office ambitions, indeed might be justified in their commitment to block his election to higher office.

    Rare is it for a politician to be so harmed by the floating of his/her name for higher office. The only one who comes to mind who suffered a similar degree of harm (as Rep. Takai) when he floated his name for higher office, is Sen. Espero. IMHO, Rep. Takai would do himself a favor by making it immediately clear that he will not be seeking other office, and stop logjamming the process. If Rep. Takai reads this, then I want him to know that I am not trying to be rude or disrespectful, but am trying to share the reaction out in the community.

    One political commentator thinks the reason there are few candidates for CD1 is that Ed Case had not announced his intentions. However, I could not see Ed Case running for CD1 and I think that other potential candidates had the same sense, so were not overly concerned about a Case candidacy. Perhaps, an exception to that might have been Rep. Takai, who may have waited to announce in deference to former Rep. Case, since he reportedly supported Rep. Case against Sen. Daniel Akaka in 2006.

    Most possible CD1 contenders seem to also think that Mufi Hannemann will not run for CD1 either, especially in the wake of the ORI scandal.

  8. Kolea:

    Thank you, galekaminari, for such a detailed comment.

    I have heard Takai is interested. I have never had a good sense for Mark's appeal, as it escapes me completely. Yet he manages to get re-elected year after year and has acquired some influence, somehow. Would other candidates really defer to him?

    I was unaware Takai supported Case against Akaka. Are you confident about your recollection on that? That doesn't ring right for me. Let me suggest Mark may have been waiting for Mufi to decide, as I recall Mark having supported Mufi overAbercrombie. I am hearing Mufi is not going to run and think he could help by making his intentions a bit more clear.

    Even with Will Espero's entry, with his "jaunty" style and all, I remain unimpressed with the announced and likely candidates. Except I have heard a former state representative is giving the race some serious consideration. If he jumps in, I think he will be the first candidate I could give "some serious consideration" of my own.

  9. Especially Incognito:

    Ed Case was never a threat to anyone but himself.

    Espero is a third world immigrant. Threw his hat
    in but was later seen with his hat back on.
    I don't believe Hawaii is ready for third world thinking.
    If any Filipino gets in, the can of worms will be opened.
    Already in past, they prove only talk and no action.

  10. ohiaforest3400:

    To characterize the present collection of CD1 candidates as anything other than underwhelming would be a gross overstatement. I have no sense that other politicians respect Mark Takai or would defer to him for any reason at all, but then I do spend much of my time in an echo chamber. Perhaps the reason the field of candidates is so thin is that we have done such a poor job of developing the next generation of leaders, something for which I think Sen. Inouye's generation shares a fair portion of the blame.

    A small observation, galekaminari: Although I don't know that it hurt her much, Donna Mercado Kim's announcement that she was considering a run for Sen. Akaka's seat (right after he announced he would not seek re-election) was met with a deafening silence and was not mentioned again after 7-10 days passed. I don't think anyone takes her seriously as a candidate for federal office, which may be why she thinks Governor is a better option for her (a thought that shows her utterly delusional sense of self-grandeur).

  11. galekaminari:

    Ohia, yes, the silence re DMK's interest in Federal seats has been deafening. It seems that her problems stemming from inquiring regarding her son's UH admission status might have ended her higher office aspirations.

    Since Gov. Burns got sick, I think that Sen. Inouye's generation tried to groom future generations of leaders. This was certainly true of Gov. Ariyoshi and Sen. Inouye, who made it a point to nurture countless young people to serve in government and in the community. If they failed, it was not for lack of trying.

    In the Inouye situation, it seems that the set up with all power accruing to the Senator affected the experience provided to the mentored. However, it should be noted that Peter Boylan, Sen. Inouye's Deputy Chief of Staff is quite youthful. I am not sure why he is being vilified now, and as an old hack of all things. It seems pretty undeserving, as he seemed to be someone who made a point of being accessible, and seemed to see his job as ensuring that Sen. Inouye was accessible despite his lofty position.

    I think that one of the young House members, who worked for Sen. Inouye in Washington, may step forward and run for CD1. I hope that he does, as he has that traditional concern for others that we treasure and often find lacking these days.

    Sen. Akaka with his wide open doors and incredible Aloha spirit nurtured a young Tulsi Gabbard, who worked for him on the Hill. Time will tell how good the new Congresswoman will be for Hawaii and our Nation, but I think that many have been pleasantly surprised thus far.

    Kolea, I and others are pretty certain of the 2006 position, but in researching back, all I could find was Rep. Takai's interview regarding his district being one of maybe 2 districts that Ed Case carried in 2006. Regardless of his position in 2006, it just amazes me that Rep. Takai historically seems to have been on the wrong side of every issue that anyone I know and respect politically holds dear. So, his backing of Mufi in 2010 is just further confirmation of that interesting factoid.

    I am not sure how a former ASUH President (Takai) could possibly have supported Mufi who probably offended over 200,000 voting UH system alum and students. But, that seems to be in keeping with Rep. Takai's personal history as ASUH President. The things that I have heard since he floated his name for CD1 have just made my head spin. People sure are talking and not holding back.

    Here is a link for an article about Jim Donovan's wine and dine list, which included Rep. Takai. http://www.civilbeat.com/articles/2012/10/11/17355-dinner-and-drinks-are-on-jim-donovan/

    I find it interesting that Rep. Takai was one of those who called for the reinstatement of Jim Donovan as Athletic Director, but was not for similar lenient treatment of MRC Greenwood. Regardless of how one feels about Jim Donovan or UH Pres. Greenwood, I am not sure how one can argue leniency for Donovan while holding Greenwood responsible.

  12. Goober:

    Japanese are being replaced
    by Espero and others who
    find loyalty in cash not to Hawaii
    or America.

    Said many Filipinos went to Philippines
    to fight Japanese but were actually fighting
    to protect the Philippines against Japan not help America
    fight Japan. Espero will bring up chicken fighting

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