The Rundown (primary money 2014)

July 15th, 2014
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We have updated our rundown of potentially competitive state House and Senate races with summaries of the most recent state campaign-finance reports. We will reassess the lineup after the primary and again in the weeks before the November general election.

Overview: Hawaii politics is in transition in the wake of the death of U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye and the retirement of U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka. The churn at the top has caused political uncertainty that may take several election cycles to settle. Gov. Neil Abercrombie, despite the state’s economic recovery and a $4.7 million war chest, is not assured of re-election given voter unease about his leadership. Majority Democrats are certain to keep control of the state House and Senate, but the leadership lineup in both chambers will likely change after the elections. Republicans are overdue to correct some of the political imbalance at the Legislature. But many of the GOP’s prospects are religious conservatives who were motivated to run by last year’s special session on gay marriage, a trend that could alienate moderate voters the party needs to compete.

State Senate
Democrats: 24
Republicans: 1

State House
Democrats: 44
Republicans: 7

State Senate

*SD4 (Kaupulehu-Waimea-North Hilo)
Sen. Malama Solomon (D)
(Past six months: $47,778 For the cycle: $117,070 Cash on hand: $68,293)
Lorraine Inouye (D)
(Past six months: $43,965 For the cycle: $51,939 Cash on hand: $27,682 Loans: $20,000)
Alain Schiller (L)
Outlook: Democratic. Solomon held off Inouye, a former state senator and mayor, by 69 votes in the primary in 2012. Solomon is the chairwoman of the Senate Water and Land Committee and a passionate voice on Native Hawaiian issues. But she can be a polarizing figure in the Senate and has upset progressives on development, geothermal, GMO and environmental issues. Nearly half of Inouye's campaign money is from a May loan.

*SD6 (West Maui-South Maui)
Sen. Rosalyn Baker (D)
(Past six months: $49,226 For the cycle: $179,980 Cash on hand: $135,070)
Terez Amato (D)
(Past six months: $17,838 For the cycle: $18,198 Cash on hand: $11,190 Loans: $147)
Jared “Pika” Dubois (R)
(Past six months: $21 For the cycle: $21 Cash on hand: $1)
Bronson Kaahui (L)
Outlook: Democratic. Baker is the chairwoman of the Senate Commerce and Consumer Protection Committee and one of the more substantive senators when it comes to policy. Yet she has angered the growing anti-GMO movement by blocking labeling bills and has drawn a primary challenge from Amato, an environmentalist. With an initiative on the November ballot that will ask voters whether to place a moratorium on GMOs on Maui, the issue may have some resonance in the primary.

*SD18 (Mililani-Waikele-Kunia)
Sen. Michelle Kidani (D)
(Past six months: $59,537 For the cycle: $215,723 Cash on hand: $143,855 Loans: $281)
Dennis Kim (R)
(Past six months: $12,265 For the cycle: $12,265 Cash on hand: $11,354)
Raymond Banda III (L)
(Past six months: $625 For the cycle: $625 Cash on hand: $300)
Outlook: Leans Democratic. Kidani is the vice chairwoman of the Senate Ways and Means Committee and oversees the state construction spending outlay. She turned back a primary challenge from former state Rep. Michael Magaoay and easily won re-election in 2012. But this is one of the races where gay marriage could be an undercurrent. Kim, an insurance agent and estate planner, has served as the public affairs director for the Mormon church in Hawaii.

*SD21 (Kalaeloa-Waianae-Makaha)
Sen. Maile Shimabukuro (D)
(Past six months: $4,375 For the cycle: $59,541 Cash on hand: $31,034)
Michael Kahikina (D)
(Past six months: $250 For the cycle: $250 Cash on hand: $0)
Tercia Ku (R)
(Past six months: $625 For the cycle: $625 Cash on hand: $129)
Johnnie-Mae Perry (R)
(Past six months: $600 For the cycle: $700 Cash on hand: $410)
Randy Roman (R)
(Past six months: $1,116 For the cycle: $1,116 Cash on hand: $0)
Ruth Brown (N)
(Past six months: $518 For the cycle: $518 Cash on hand: $99 Loans: $517)
Outlook: Democratic. Shimabukuro is the chairwoman of the Senate Hawaiian Affairs Committee and had some legislative successes last session on bills related to child abuse and sexual assault. Kahikina is a former state representative and ordained minister who has been active in Leeward community affairs. Kahikina has not been aggressively fundraising.

*SD23 (Heeia-Laie-Waialua)
Rep. Richard Fale (R)
(Past six months: $42,347 For the cycle: $77,426 Cash on hand: $43,056)
Colleen Meyer (R)
(Past six months: $31,483 For the cycle: $43,233 Cash on hand: $28,111 Loans: $17,175; $77,179 in total from previous campaigns)
Norman Brown (R)
(Past six months: $632 For the cycle: $632 Cash on hand: $0)
Gil Riviere (D)
(Past six months: $16,781 For the cycle: $39,848 Cash on hand: $22,190)
Outlook: Open seat. Tossup. Sen. Clayton Hee’s decision to run for lieutenant governor has thrown the political control of this sprawling Windward and North Shore district into uncertainty. Fale, a Mormon who opposes gay marriage, had prepared to take on Hee, one of the sponsors of marriage equality. But the dynamics have shifted with Hee no longer the target in the general election. Meyer, who narrowly lost to Hee in 2012, is a fiscal and social conservative who represented a portion of the district in the House for 14 years. Riviere, who switched parties and became a Democrat after losing to Fale in a House GOP primary in 2012, is hoping the environment and land conservation trump social issues.

State House

*HD4 (Hawaiian Acres- Pahoa-Kalapana)
Rep. Faye Hanohano (D)
(Past six months: $2,120 For the cycle: $5,765 Cash on hand: $2,330)
Joy San Buenaventura (D)
(Past six months: $17,971 For the cycle: $17,971 Cash on hand: $8,647 Loans: $5,000)
Leilani Bronson-Crelly (D)
(Past six months: $7,187 For the cycle: $7,287 Cash on hand: $2,546 Loans: $1,500)
Julia Peleiholani (D)
(Past six months: $2,000 For the cycle: $2,225 Cash on hand: $1,398)
Brian Jordan (D)
(Past six months: $157 For the cycle: $157 Cash on hand: $53)
Gary Thomas (R)
(Past six months: $4,475 For the cycle: $4,475 Cash on hand: $1,594 Loans: $2,000)
Outlook: Democratic. House leaders scolded Hanohano, the chairwoman of the House Ocean, Marine Resources and Hawaiian Affairs Committee, after she was accused for a second time of racially discriminatory and inappropriate conduct. Hanohano insists that her actions have been mischaracterized and she has her defenders in a Puna-based district suspicious of Oahu-centric political attitudes. She has drawn four primary opponents, including San Buenaventura, an attorney. In such a crowded field, however, name recognition could work in Hanohano’s favor.

*HD6 (Holualoa, Kailua-Kona, Honokohau)
Rep. Nicole Lowen (D)
(Past six months: $27,390 For the cycle: $38,909 Cash on hand: $27,468 Loans: $3,000; $8,500 in total from previous campaign)
Kalei Akaka (D)
(Past six months: $8,050 For the cycle: $9,279 Cash on hand: $8,954)
Kelly Valenzuela (R)
(Past six months: $11,720 For the cycle: $11,720 Cash on hand: $5,638)
Roy Ebert (R)
(Past six months: $0 For the cycle: $50 Cash on hand: $50)
Outlook. Tossup. Lowen, a freshman, edged Akaka, the granddaughter of retired U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka, by 45 votes in the primary in 2012. Lowen has the fundraising advantage in the rematch. Valenzuela, the daughter of the late state lawmaker Wilfred “Buddy” Soares, is among the crop of candidates motivated to run by the special session on gay marriage. The west side district is potentially competitive for Republicans.

*HD9 (Kahului-Wailuku-Puunene)
Rep. Justin Woodson (D)
(Past six months: $13,866 For the cycle: $29,997 Cash on hand: $12,459)
James “Kimo” Apana (D)
(Past six months: $22,403 For the cycle: $22,403 Cash on hand: $8,128)
Outlook: Democratic. Woodson was appointed last year by Gov. Neil Abercrombie to fill a House vacancy and is facing primary voters for the first time. Apana is a former Maui mayor.

*HD15 (Wailua-Hanamaulu-Lihue)
Rep. James Tokioka (D)
(Intends to file amended report. Had brought in $42,982 for the cycle through December and was carrying $7,500 in loans from previous campaigns)
Dylan Hooser (D)
(Past six months: $14,097 For the cycle: $18,331 Cash on hand: $9,582)
Steve Yoder (R)
(Past six months: $10,253 For the cycle: $10,253 Cash on hand: -$1,851 Loans: $4,441)
Outlook: Democratic. Tokioka has strong ties to the political establishment on the Garden Island, but he lost influence in the House after the leadership shakeup last year that brought House Speaker Joseph Souki, dissident Democrats and Republicans to power. Hooser, the son of Kauai County Councilman Gary Hooser, is attempting to tap into the growing anti-GMO movement.

HD22 (Waikiki-Ala Moana-Kakaako)
Rep. Tom Brower (D)
(Past six months: $5,725 For the cycle: $10,744 Cash on hand: -$2,988 Loans: $11,674 from previous campaigns)
Janet Grace (R)
(Past six months: $16,116 For the cycle: $16,116 Cash on hand: $6,974)
Outlook: Leans Democratic. Brower, the chairman of the House Tourism Committee, gained attention last year – some of it unwanted – for taking a sledgehammer to stolen shopping carts once used by the homeless. Grace, a former executive director of Hawaii Right to Life who works in home health care, is among the candidates being touted by religious conservatives. She has passed Brower in fundraising.

*HD23 (Manoa-Punahou-Moiliili)
Rep. Isaac Choy (D)
(Past six months: $6,794 For the cycle: $84,989 Cash on hand: $53,195)
Nathaniel Kinney (D)
(Past six months: $33,002 For the cycle: $46,930 Cash on hand: $22,888 Loans: $22,000)

Outlook: Democratic. Choy, the chairman of the House Higher Education Committee, is an accountant often called upon by lawmakers to share his expertise on finance issues. Kinney, an insurance executive, is a former aide to Mayor Kirk Caldwell and a director for the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, District Council 50. He lost a special election for City Council in 2009. Choy has the fundraising advantage.

*HD27 (Nuuanu-Liliha-Alewa Heights)
Rep. Takashi Ohno (D)
(Past six months: $24,388 For the cycle: $37,342 Cash on hand: $28,362)
Max Fowler (R)
(Past six months: $46,798 For the cycle: $46,798 Cash on hand: $25,831)
Outlook: Tossup. Ohno, a freshman, defeated longtime Republican state Rep. Corinne Ching in 2012 when President Barack Obama’s presence on the ballot helped lift Democratic contenders. Fowler, an associate pastor at Kakaako Christian Fellowship motivated to run after the gay marriage debate, could be formidable. He has already eclipsed the incumbent in fundraising.

*HD28 (Kamehameha Heights-Kalihi Valley)
House Vice Speaker John Mizuno (D)
(Past six months: $21,220 For the cycle: $32,774 Cash on hand: $11,399)
Carole Kaapu (R)
(Past six months: $4,448 For the cycle: $13,578 Cash on hand: $7,949 Loans: $3,922)
Outlook: Democratic. Mizuno comfortably defeated Kaapu in 2012. The vice speaker, a Christian, has been active in the faith-based community in his district, but his decision to change his position and support marriage equality disappointed some fellow Christians.

*HD33 (Halawa-Aiea-Newtown)
Arnold Wong (D)
(Past six months: $13,005 For the cycle: $46,705 Cash on hand: $33,586 Loans: $10,000)
Sam Kong (D)
Tracy Arakaki (D)
(Past six months: $1,840 For the cycle: $1,840 Cash on hand: $1,068)
Robert Helsham (R)
(Past six months: $2,382 For the cycle: $2,382 Cash on hand: $1,136)
Outlook: Open. Leans Democratic. Rep. K. Mark Takai’s decision to run for Congress created an open seat. Wong works for the Ironworkers union. Kong, a florist, lost two House campaigns as a Republican before switching parties to run as a Democrat. Helsham, a consultant, athletic director at Christian Academy, and worship minister at First Assembly of God Red Hill, is among the candidates backed by religious conservatives in the wake of the gay marriage debate.

*HD36 (Mililani-Mililani Mauka-Waipio Acres)
Rep. Beth Fukumoto Chang (R)
(Past six months: $21,326 For the cycle: $47,635 Cash on hand: $36,382 Loans: $81)
Marilyn Lee (D)
(Past six months: $25,813 For the cycle: $26,313 Cash on hand: $18,030 Loans: $5,000)
Luella Costales (D)
(Past six months: $7,263 For the cycle: $11,470 Cash on hand: $3,759)
Outlook: Leans Republican. Fukumoto, a freshman, is one of the GOP’s emerging young leaders. Lee, a former state representative who lost to Fukumoto in 2012, is seeking a rematch. But Costales, who serves on the neighborhood board and the city police commission, could present a hurdle for Lee in the primary. The district’s shifting suburban demographics make it a bellwether.

*HD38 (Waipahu)
Rep. Henry Aquino (D)
(Past six months: $25,053 For the cycle: $44,405 Cash on hand: $28,137)
Alex Sonson (D)
(Past six months: $23,171 For the cycle: $25,937 Cash on hand: $10,050 Loans: $17,716; $26,748 in total from previous campaigns)
Outlook: Democratic. Aquino is the chairman of the House Public Safety Committee. Sonson, an attorney and former state lawmaker, lost state Senate primary challenges to Sen. Clarence Nishihara in 2012 and 2008.

*HD41 (Ewa Beach-West Loch Estates)
Rep. Rida Cabanilla (D)
(Past six months: $4,050 For the cycle: $15,199 Cash on hand: $3,714 Loans: $2,499 from previous campaigns)
Matt LoPresti (D)
(Past six months: $7,285 For the cycle: $10,192 Cash on hand: $8,651)
Steve Wiggins (R)
(Past six months: $4,205 For the cycle: $4,205 Cash on hand: $2,817)
Bryan Jeremiah (R)
(Past six months: $1,000 For the cycle: $1,100 Cash on hand: -$732)
Tom Berg (L)
(Past six months: $0 For the cycle: -$4,968 Cash on hand: -$4,968 Loans: $21,551 from previous campaigns)
Outlook: Leans Democratic. Cabanilla, the House majority floor leader, has held off several challenges since she first claimed the district in 2004, but rarely without drama. LoPresti, a Hawaii Pacific University philosophy professor who lost to Cabanilla in the primary in 2012, has secured several labor, environmental and progressive endorsements. Berg, a former city councilman who used to work for Cabanilla and twice unsuccessfully challenged her as a Republican, is running as a Libertarian.

*HD42 (Kapolei-Makakilo)
Rep. Sharon Har (D)
(Past six months: $28,145 For the cycle: $70,040 Cash on hand: $53,970)
Nicole Ferguson (D)
(Past six months: $11,700 For the cycle: $11,700 Cash on hand: $9,271)
Michael Golojuch (D)
(Past six months: $6,379 For the cycle: $6,379 Cash on hand: $2,452)
Suk Moses (R)
(Past six months: $574 For the cycle: $574 Cash on hand: $0 Loans: $574)
Outlook: Leans Democratic. Har, the vice chairwoman of the House Judiciary Committee, has been targeted by gay rights and progressive activists for her vote against marriage equality and the perception she is too conservative. Ferguson, who teaches environmental biology at the University of Hawaii-West Oahu, just moved to the west side within the past year. Golojuch has led the Democratic Party of Hawaii’s gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender caucus. A three-way primary favors Har, who has the fundraising advantage. Moses is the wife of former state Rep. Mark Moses, the Republican Har defeated when she claimed the swing district in 2006.

*HD43 (Kalaleloa-Ko Olina-Maili)
Rep. Karen Awana (D)
(Past six months: $9,773 For the cycle: $11,773 Cash on hand: $944)
Stacelynn Eli (D)
(Past six months: $13,390 For the cycle: $15,772 Cash on hand: $934)
Andria Tupola (R)
(Past six months: $11,085 For the cycle: $20,476 Cash on hand: $5,424)
Outlook: Leans Democratic. Awana resigned her post as House majority floor leader last year after her fourth fine for campaign-finance violations, which could make her vulnerable. Eli, who has worked at a home improvement store, has outraised Awana in the primary. Tupola, a music educator and Mormon who helped organize neighborhood protests against the special session on gay marriage, is among the GOP’s best young prospects.

*HD45 (Mililani-Schofield-Kunia)
Rep. Lauren Cheape Matsumoto (R)
(Past six months: $24,382 For the cycle: $31,729 Cash on hand: $21,816)
Michael Magaoay (D)
(Past six months: $7,500 For the cycle: $10,421 Cash on hand: $8,311)
Outlook: Leans Republican. Matsumoto, a former Miss Hawaii, is a freshman with family roots in both the Mililani and Waialua portions of the district. Magaoay is a former state lawmaker attempting a comeback after two unsuccessful campaigns for state Senate.

*HD 47 (Waialua-Kahuku-Waiahole)
Kent Fonoimoana (D)
(Past six months: $12,634 For the cycle: $14,634 Cash on hand: $7,374 Loans: $4,000)
Feki Pouha (R)
(Past six months: $12,450 For the cycle: $12,450 Cash on hand: $5,749)
Outlook. Open. Tossup. Rep. Richard Fale’s decision to run for state Senate has created an opening for Democrats to reclaim the North Shore and Windward district. Former state Rep. Gil Riviere, who had lost to Fale in the House GOP primary in 2012, switched parties and became a Democrat with a rematch with Fale in mind. But with Riviere also now running for Senate, the race is wide open. Fonoimoana serves on the neighborhood board. Pouha, who has a personal finance business, is an ally of Fale’s who could compete if gay marriage becomes a driving issue with voters.

*HD48 (Kahaluu-Ahuimanu-Kaneohe)
Robert Harris (D)
(Past six months: $45,174 For the cycle: $45,274 Cash on hand: $26,136 Loans: $10,000)
Jarrett Keohokalole (D)
(Past six months: $41,893 For the cycle: $41,893 Cash on hand: $28,555 Loans: $2,091)
Eldean Kukahiko (R)
(Past six months: $8,996 For the cycle: $8,996 Cash on hand: $4,383)
Kaimanu Takayama (L)
Kana Naipo (N)
(Past six months: $448 For the cycle: $448 Cash on hand: $448)
Outlook. Open. Leans Democratic. Rep. Jessica Wooley’s appointment to the state Office of Environmental Quality Control created an open seat. Harris is the director of the Sierra Club Hawaii. Keohokalole works on invasive species issues for the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. Both Democrats have had impressive fundraising performances. Kukahiko, a retired police officer and a senior pastor at Hope Chapel Kahaluu, is among the candidates motivated by the gay marriage debate.

*HD50 (Kailua-Kaneohe)
Rep. Cynthia Thielen (R)
(Past six months: $33,665 For the cycle: $83,787 Cash on hand: $41,469)
Joan Hood (R)
(Past six months: $13,244 For the cycle: $13,244 Cash on hand: $1,960)
Holly Broman (D)
(Past six months: $150 For the cycle: $150 Cash on hand: $150)
Outlook. Republican. Thielen, a leading voice on environmental and energy issues, is the only Republican in the Legislature who voted for marriage equality. Hood is an apostle for Pacific Realm-International Pentecostal Holiness Church. The primary could provide insight into whether gay marriage will become a significant campaign issue this year.

*HD51 (Kailua-Lanikai-Waimanalo)
Rep. Chris Lee (D)
(Past six months: $13,731 For the cycle: $34,841 Cash on hand: $10,937)
Wayne Hikida (R)
(Past six months: $33,020 For the cycle: $33,020 Cash on hand: $19,007)
Outlook: Leans Democratic. Lee was the most visible House Democrat in the drive for marriage equality. Hikida is a retired insurance executive and former Mormon bishop influenced to run by the gay marriage debate. Hikida had a strong fundraising performance.

6 Responses to “The Rundown (primary money 2014)”

  1. Teddy Freddy:

    Interesting: Kalei Akaka has a high ticket fundraiser at Duc's on Oahu and only 4 people show up Rep. Har, Rep. Tokioka, Rep. Marcus Oshiro and GMO Rep. Maluafiti. http://ags.hawaii.gov/campaign/files/2014/05/FundraiserAkaka050714.pdf Then later Senator Kouchi kicks in $1,000. WTFIUWT? https://nc.csc.hawaii.gov/Report/RPT2010/20140710090301CC10966SA.html Where or where is the reporting on this? And Tokioka is going to file an amended report? When? After the Primary I am guessing. Yes, his dog ate his report. Oh "the guy was out of town".


  2. Teddy Freddy:

    Hmmm Seems to be a pattern here. Greg Takayama holds a big ticket fundraiser on May 21 http://ags.hawaii.gov/campaign/files/2014/05/FundraiserTakayama052114.pdf

    Looks like only 6 people show up and all are other members of the State House of Representatives - theoretically buying two tickets apiece and effectively donating to his campaign $1,000 and more! Reps: Tsuji, Say, Oshiro, Choy, Yamashita, and Ichiyama

    https://nc.csc.hawaii.gov/Report/RPT2010/20140709203432CC10914SA.html

    WTF! They go have drinks at a bar somewhere, call it a fundraiser and those with big war-chests "buy two tickets" and thus circumvent the law.


  3. WestSideTory:

    Your outlook for HD-41 "Leans Democrat" should be "Toss up". Although Rep Cabanilla is the incumbant, her failure to vote in the special session with a lame excuse that "Ewa Beach would be toast", her support of "Pono Choices" even though she knows it was not medically accurate, her $200K request for a grant in aide for her known defunct Ewa Beach Historical Society, her radical desire to turn Hawaii into the largest Drug Dealer in the country with distribution of marijuana, coupled with her years of ethics issues and her failure to attend only a hand full of Heighborhood Board meetings proves she is out of touch with this community and does not represent us. The people have noticed and believe its time for change in Ewa Beach.


  4. Teddy Freddy:

    Well it has been one week and Former Speaker Calvin Says #2 main man Kauai Representative Tokioka still has not amended his campaign spending report to reflect the truth. Clearly there is a problem here. When will the media or the campaign spending commission hold this guy accountable? He and/or his treasurer submitted a report that is obviously false and incomplete, and they clearly knew this when they hit the "submit" button. If this was an innocent mistake it would have been taken care of "first thing Monday morning" and that would be the end of it. People are voting now.


  5. Teddy Freddy:

    Why is Jimmy getting a pass? July 19 and he still has not amended the report. What is in the report that he is afraid of?


  6. Teddy Freddy:

    tick, tick, tick, tick - two weeks and counting and the Kauai Representative still has not amended his report. WUWT?


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