Japanese American candidates in Hawai‘i lead in recent polls


Recent polls show two Japanese American candidates leading in their bid to win their hotly-contested Democratic primaries against incumbents Aug. 10.

In the U.S. Senate race between appointed U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz and U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, Hanabusa has a 50 to 42 percent edge, according to a Hawaii News Now/Star Advertiser Hawaii poll released Aug. 4. The margin of error is 4.6 percent in the poll, conducted by Ward Research.

Schatz, the former lieutenant governor of the state who was appointed by Hawai‘i Gov. Neil Abercrombie to the seat vacated by the December 2012 death of Hawai‘i political icon Sen. Daniel Inouye — despite Inouye’s stated wishes of Hanabusa filling his seat — has been endorsed by political heavyweights from former Vice President Al Gore, to Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Harry Reid, to President Obama himself, according to Real Clear Politics.

A Merriman River Group poll released on Aug. 1, however, showed Schatz with a 49 to 41 percent lead over Hanabusa.

In April, Abercrombie implied in a Los Angeles Times interview that Inouye’s deathbed letter to him may not have been authentic, which set off a firestorm of reaction to which he later apologized to Inouye’s widow for.

The latest Hawaii News Now/Star Advertiser Hawaii poll also shows Hawai‘i state Sen. David Ige with an 18-point lead over incumbent Gov. Neil Abercrombie, 54 to 36 percent, with 11 percent listed as “don’t know/refused” and a margin of error of 4.6 percent.

The gap is even wider in the state’s most populous island of Oahu, where Ige holds a better than 2-to-1 margin lead in a Hawaii News Now/Star Advertiser Hawaii poll, 61 to 30 percent — despite the fact that Abercrombie represented urban Honolulu in Congress for 20 years before taking the governor’s seat.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *