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Cayetano falls short of 50%; to face Caldwell in November

By B.J. Reyes

POSTED:
LAST UPDATED: 04:34 p.m. HST, Oct 23, 2012


Former Gov. Ben Cayetano ended the night far ahead of all challengers in Saturday's mayoral primary but fell short of the majority of the votes he needed to win the race outright. 

Mayor Peter Carlisle conceded the election, leaving former city Managing Director Kirk Caldwell to face Cayetano in the November general election.

With only a few late absentee votes to be counted, and all precincts reporting on Oahu, Cayetano was had nearly 45 percent, followed by Caldwell at nearly 30 percent and Carlisle at 25 percent.

Carlisle conceded the race and then headed over to Caldwell and Cayetano headquarters to congratulate them.

“It’s clear to me that we're not going to prevail tonight.” he told supporters before leaving his headquarters after the 9 p.m. results were announced.

Cayetano said he is prepared for the general election. 

“I’ve never experienced the level of enthusiasm of supporters in my other eight elections as I have in this ninth election,” he added. “Once I announced that I was going to run, people felt now they had a choice and that they came forward to support me.”

Caldwell said he's been speaking to working families at union halls and seeking support of working families throughout the campaign. He said now he also will seek support from all corners of the island, including Carlisle supporters.

“I’m hopeful his supporters will consider my position on rail to be similar to the mayor's and they'll help me,” Caldwell said.

Cayetano is a stauch opponent of the $5.26 billion rail transit system. Caldwell and Carlisle support the project.

The three major candidates settled in at their respective campaign headquarters -- joined by supporters who enjoyed pupus and live entertainment -- as they gathered to watch the results roll in.

The three major candidates settled in at their respective campaign headquarters -- joined by supporters who enjoyed pupus and live entertainment -- as they gathered to watch the results roll in.

Earlier in the day, Caldwell and Cayetano voted at their respective polling places. 

Caldwell also voted, for the first time, with his daughter, Mya, who recently turned 18.

Carlisle, who turned in his ballot this week through early walk-in voting, began the day on official city business, attending a memorial service and funeral for Honolulu Police Ofc. Chad Morimoto, who died July 23 when his motorcycle crashed during a training session in Mililani.

He spent the rest of the day canvassing the island from Mililani, Waipahu and Pearl City to Kaneohe and Kailua, ending at his campaign headquarters on Ward Avenue.

"Today started very, very early and a whole bunch of people did this caravan thing with me and we went absolutely what seemed like all over the island for hours and hours and hours on end," Carlisle said as he greeted his supporters at headquarters. "I think we put together an absolutely fantastic campaign, it's something the likes of which I have never seen.”

Cayetano has mixed campaigning with resting after getting a health scare earlier in the week when he was hospitalized with a bleeding ulcer. He was released Tuesday after spending two nights at the Queen’s Medical Center to have the condition diagnosed and treated.

———

Star-Advertiser reporters Rosemarie Bernardo, Gary Kubota and Sarah Zoellick contributed to this report.






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