We are less than 24 hours away from one of the most hard-fought election seasons in recent memory for Hawaii. Both sides have campaigned vigorously and have aimed to sway voters all around the state. Millions of dollars have been spent and countless hours of television have been taken over by political ads for one side or another. The big race is for governor and the top two contenders, Neil Abercrombie and Duke Aiona have not held back on the punches.
Desperate America Report has looked at a few of the larger races and spoken to some of Hawaii’s residents on who they think will win. Here is our breakdowns of the Governor, US Senate, and both US House races.
This race has seen $6 million in spending combined. Both men have flooded the air waves with ads attacking the other as well as fluff pieces on themselves. Abercrombie took a week off after the September primary election victory of Mufi Hannemann and that may cost him in the end. Most polls have put Abercrombie’s once double-digit lead somewhere near 4%. Of course, many still feel the Democratic candidate still has the sizable edge and is still in control. The Democratic party has done well to unify after a tough primary season and former adversary, Mufi Hannemann, has come around and publicly supported Abercrombie.
Aiona did not face a very tough challenge in the primary and was able to save most of his funds for the general election battle. He has been aided in large part by the Republican Governors Association who have spent much money for television ads since Aiona became the Republican nominee. Aiona has looked to distance himself from the Lingle administration as well as embrace certain aspects of his former boss. He has also faced questions about his ties to a controversial religious group. Aiona has done well to close the gap between himself and his Democratic challenger.
Outcome: Aiona’s hopes hinge on his ability to get enough of the independent voters away from Abercrombie. The former US Congressman, Abercrombie has a sizable advantage on Oahu having served as the CD1 representative for the last 20 years. Abercrombie is also aided by the traditionally large Democratic voter turnout on election day. However, Abercrombie must hope not to see a repeat of 2002 when Republican Linda Lingle edged out a victory over a scrambling Mazie Hirono. That election showed the need for party unity when moving towards the general election. Dems have done well to bring the party together. Desperate America Report sees this race coming down to the final printout with Neil Abercrombie winning by a 5-8% margin.
Dan Inouye has had little to worry about from his Republican challenger, Cam Cavasso. The longtime Senate power broker has still made the rounds at various rallies and parties within the Democratic Party. Cavasso has done well to remain in the conversation by running some very entertaining ads. However, there is little evidence this race will be close.
Rundown: Inouye will be reelected by a margin near 30%. It is a tad smaller than what would have been expected a few months ago, but it was still never that close.
US House CD1: Djou and Hanabusa have been battling ever since the special election this Spring. Both candidates have spent a ton of money and have sent a ton of barbs in the direction of the other. Similar to the Governor’s race, the key to victory is which candidate has the independent voters. Djou has looked to keep a distance from the local and national Republican parties in an attempt to portray himself as an independent thinker. Hanabusa has pledged her support to the Obama administration and has received support from the President himself in robocalls and emails.
Rundown: For much of the build up to the election, Djou has held a lead of about 5%. However, many polls have seen that lead fluctuate and sometimes become a deficit. In the end the independent voters go away from the traditional Democrat Hanabusa and help reelect the Republican Djou. However, this will be a margin of victory inside of 3%.
US House CD2: John Willoughby has done his best to chip away at the lead of incumbent Mazie Hirono. However, Hirono has been able to keep a sizable double-digit lead through most of the election season over her Tea Party challenger. An endorsement from conservative darling, Sarah Palin, seems to have done little to sway the normally liberal neighbor islands. Hirono has done well to state her case and has repeatedly chosen to talk about herself and ignore her opponent entirely.
Rundown: This is another one of the probable routes. Willoughby has always been fighting an uphill battle since taking the Republican nomination. Hirono has traveled the state and solidified her support. Don’t expect this race to be within 25%. Hirono should win easy.
There you go ladies and gents. It will be a fun night come November 2nd. Follow us on Twitter for live election results and reactions. And please remember: GET OUT THERE AND VOTE ON NOVEMBER 2ND!