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Hirono defeats Lingle in U.S. Senate race

By Star-Advertiser & Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 10:44 p.m. HST, Nov 06, 2012

U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono swept to a triumphant victory over former Gov. Linda Lingle tonight in the campaign for U.S. Senate.

Hirono, a Democrat, led Lingle, a Republican, 63 percent to 35.5 percent after early votes were counted in the race to succeed retiring U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka, D-Hawaii. The Associated Press and CNN called the election for the Democrat shortly after the polls were scheduled to close at 6 p.m. but while some voters were still waiting in lines to cast ballots. 

Hirono, 65, is the first Asian-American woman elected to the Senate.

The Hawaii Poll measured Hirono with a double-digit lead over Lingle in May 2011, a gap that remained stable throughout a campaign that featured five debates and more than $10 million in fundraising by the candidates.

Hirono’s campaign themes, that she would protect Social Security and Medicare, favor higher taxes on the wealthy, and invest in early childhood education and alternative energy, were aligned with core Democratic values. She framed a vote for Lingle, despite the former governor’s claims of bipartisanship, as a vote for more conservative national Republicans and against Hawaii-born President Barack Obama and U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, the chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Not only did Lingle have to run against Obama, Inouye, and the state’s Democratic tradition, she had to do so from a weaker position than during her successful campaigns for governor. Lingle’s job approval ratings, battered from the budget cuts and other fallout of the recession, were low when she left office in 2010. The Hawaii Poll found that Lingle’s favorable rating among voters never broke 50 percent during the campaign.

Lingle raised more than $5.4 million overall, considerably less than the $8 million to $10 million she initially predicted. Hirono, who raised more than $5.1 million, brought in more money than Lingle since the August primary.

Lopsided poll results kept Hawaii mostly off the Senate battleground map, but mainland interest groups did do some significant outreach in the islands.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce spent more than $1.2 million in advertising on behalf of Lingle. Fund for Freedom Committee, a mainland super PAC tied to the Republican Governors Association, spent about $335,000 for Lingle. Citizens for a Working America, another mainland super PAC tied to Republicans, produced an eight-page booklet for Lingle.

Majority PAC, a mainland super PAC helping Democrats, spent more than $126,000 on behalf of Hirono. Several labor and women’s groups also dropped advertising for the congresswoman worth six figures.

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niimi wrote:
How can this be released ahead of any poll results?
on November 6,2012 | 05:30PM
1local wrote:
very irresponsible - running this article prior to the polls being closed in Hawaii... Hopefully Lingle proves the AP wrong...
on November 6,2012 | 06:13PM
neighborhoodmole wrote:
Exit polls
on November 6,2012 | 06:14PM
Pocho wrote:
is the ballot count done already?
on November 6,2012 | 06:59PM
shcole wrote:
How are you calling this race before the polls are even all closed? No bias here...
on November 6,2012 | 05:32PM
1local wrote:
it is now 8:10 pm polls still open. still no results...
on November 6,2012 | 07:11PM
sweetness613 wrote:
I'm with niimi, how can they say this when the polling places had trouble with paper haven't even finished yet??
on November 6,2012 | 05:40PM
niimi wrote:
It is 6:38 PM and the Star Advertiser has posted the winner of this election race before the polls have even been publicly released.
on November 6,2012 | 05:40PM
8082062424 wrote:
CNN called it this dumb paper just ran the story. if that not strange i do not no what is
on November 6,2012 | 05:52PM
PCTekHI wrote:
Didn't Star Advertiser endorsed Hirono? The next article will be Caldwell defeating Cayetano for mayor.
on November 6,2012 | 05:55PM
Maneki_Neko wrote:
Hirono said she hopes Washington politicians can set aside differences that led to abysmal productivity in 2012

Mazie had zero bills become law and missed tons of votes. I'd say the productivity problem is hers.

on November 6,2012 | 06:06PM
walaau808 wrote:
The problem isn't just Mazie, it's the entire House! They vote against each other for spite! How can anything get passed when the two sides fundamentally refuse to work with one another? Hirono isn't the problem, it's people like you and me that can't find common ground to make things work for the betterment of the majority of people...
on November 6,2012 | 07:11PM
hikine wrote:
Because the StarAdvertiser is pro Hirono! A newspaper who takes sides means they are not a fair news media. SA skewed Lingle's reputation, which only means SA doesn't understand the news it publishes.
on November 6,2012 | 10:25PM
5xcalibir2 wrote:
Lingle skewed her own reputation....shopo who backed her for governor was no where to be seen this time around....you can fool some of the people some of the time etc..
on November 7,2012 | 04:21AM
warriorsanddolphins wrote:
i hope do nothing hirono doesnt make it.
on November 6,2012 | 06:02PM
Maneki_Neko wrote:
Based on zero precincts reporting zero results, a winner is announced. Now, come on........
on November 6,2012 | 06:05PM
GrLan21 wrote:
Lingle got her due! That's what you get for having a poor record as governor. The people of Hawaii soundly rejected her agenda, which was not moderate as she portrayed herself as. She campaigned for McCain & Sarah Palin vigorously in 2008. She is not bipartisan.
on November 6,2012 | 06:06PM
neighborhoodmole wrote:
Lingle was a Palin clone.
on November 6,2012 | 06:15PM
kukui_nut wrote:
Compared to a Democratic mannequin that is Mazie. Tough to choose.
on November 6,2012 | 07:53PM
5xcalibir2 wrote:
weep weep sob sob
on November 7,2012 | 04:18AM
walaau808 wrote:
on November 6,2012 | 07:12PM
Kuokoa wrote:
Ballots on Oahu have not yet been counted and this is absolutely false until that Tim.
on November 6,2012 | 07:45PM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Lingles done.
on November 6,2012 | 08:19PM
Kapaho wrote:
When Lingle stated "You know me", that was her death sentence because the people of Hawaii remembered what a terrible governor she was. She ran a negative campaign against Hirono because she had nothing good to say about herself. I'm glad Hirono kicked her butt.
on November 6,2012 | 10:28PM
hikine wrote:
Hirono won with lies and deceptions. This is how our future will be based on.
on November 6,2012 | 10:30PM
5xcalibir2 wrote:
actually it was Lingle who LOST with lies and deceptions
on November 7,2012 | 04:15AM
Kapaho wrote:
People say that Hirono will be Inouye's puppet. Wasn't Akaka the same?
on November 6,2012 | 10:37PM
5xcalibir2 wrote:
weep weep sob sob...stop the blood clot cryin
on November 7,2012 | 04:17AM
OrbitalripZ wrote:
Congratulations to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, which hired Ward Research to do its polling. In the last published poll (October 15-22), Ward Research predicted Hirono (57%) would beat Lingle (35%) by a landslide of 22 points, with a margin of error of /- 3.5%. On the other hand, the rival Civil Beat/Merriman River Group poll (October 24-26) called it Hirono (55%) over Lingle (40%) but by a smaller margin of 15 points with a smaller margin of error of /- 2.8%. As for Retired Maj. Gen. Robert G.F. Lee, Lingle's campaign manager, who attacked the Hawaii Poll as "another skewed poll from Ward Research whose methodology is wildly out of step with that of real political polling firms," the only thing real for him is real egg on his face. Eeww.
on November 6,2012 | 11:30PM
5xcalibir2 wrote:
he was suffering from an acute case of denial....fortunately today he is cured with a healthy dose of reality!!!!!
on November 7,2012 | 04:13AM
rhs763 wrote:
Not much to choose from. Like Akaka, another do nothing Senator to represent Hawaii for decades!
on November 7,2012 | 02:13AM
5xcalibir2 wrote:
jus so glad i don't have to see that stupid Lingle Ad at the top left corner of this web-site....got a major beat-down!!!!! as i predicted....not even close!!!!!!.....shame though all that money the nat'l rep party threw away in this race....would have been better served giving it away to the homeless veterans....or any homeless for that matter
on November 7,2012 | 04:10AM
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