By Derrick DePledge
Gov. Neil Abercrombie on Thursday picked up the endorsement of the Ironworkers Union Local 625 and the Ironworkers Stabilization Fund.
The union represents 2,000 workers across the state.
“We believe that Governor Abercrombie is committed to supporting and improving the lives of Hawaii’s working men and women," T. George Paris, director of the Ironworkers Stabilization Fund, and Joseph O’Donnell, business manager of the Ironworkers Union Local 625, said in a joint statement. "Neil is a ‘local boy’ at heart with a deep commitment to our community.
“During his tenure as Governor, he turned our state finances around and led Hawaii out of a recession. He invested nearly $3.5 billion to upgrade aging infrastructure across the state including our schools, airports and highways. In the process, he’s added jobs, reduced unemployment, and bolstered our economy.”
*Update: Abercrombie also won the endorsement of Equality Hawaii Action Fund, the political arm of the group that advocated for marriage equality in a special session last year.
“We will never forget that the key step in the battle for marriage equality was when Gov. Abercrombie called the state Legislature into a special session. Had it not been for the governor’s leadership, the marriage issue might have languished in committee, as it did the previous session,” Jacce Mikulanec, co-chair of Equality Hawaii Action Fund, said in a statement. “Neil Abercrombie is, and has always been, a great advocate for and defender of the LGBT community. We look forward to his second term in office to cement his civil rights legacy and continue his administration’s record of fiscal responsibility, focus on environmental quality, and dedication to education and social service reform.”
Abercrombie is facing state Sen. David Ige in the Democratic primary.
Equality Hawaii Action Fund also endorsed state Sen. Clayton Hee for lieutenant governor. Hee, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary and Labor Committee, was instrumental in crafting the marriage equality law.
Hee is up against Lt. Gov. Shan Tsutsui and former television reporter Mary Zanakis in the Democratic primary.
Meanwhile, former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann, an independent candidate for governor, won endorsements on Thursday from the State of Hawaii Organization of Police Officers and the Sheetmetal Workers Local 293.
The police officer's union has about 3,100 members. The sheetmetal union represents about 1,000 workers.