comscore Hirono overwhelms underfunded challenger | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Hawaii News

Hirono overwhelms underfunded challenger

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Democrat U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono sailed to re-election by defeating a tea party Republican candidate in the race for the U.S. House seat representing Hawaii’s neighbor islands and rural Oahu.

The 62-year-old Hirono outmatched John Willoughby by airing several TV ads and raising nearly $1 million.

The Associated Press called the race based on early returns. Hirono held an insurmountable 68 percent to 23.5 percent lead after the second printout.

The 52-year-old Willoughby, an airline pilot who had never run for public office, relied on tea party groups’ support rather than fundraising and ads. He raised only about $19,000.

Hirono said she would prioritize early education, renewable energy and finding federal money for Hawaii programs. She’ll also support transportation projects and Medicare funding.

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