City Councilman Ron Menor said today he has decided not to run for Honolulu mayor this fall after all.
Menor had given strong indications in the past year that he would run. He changed his campaign committee organizational report with the Campaign Spending Commission to reflect it was exploring a mayoral run, and the committee has held several fundraisers.
“After carefully exploring a possible run for mayor over the past several months, I have decided not to enter the upcoming mayor’s race,” Menor said in a statement today.
He noted that he is now chairing two major Council committees — the Zoning, Planning and Housing Committee and the Executive Matters and Legal Affairs Committee that has crucial matters before it.
As a result, he said, “although many community leaders familiar with my work believe I would be an effective mayor and have provided considerable encouragement for me to offer myself as a candidate, I have come to the conclusion I would not be able to devote the necessary time to wage a strong and effective campaign for mayor, while carrying out my the duties and responsibilities as chair of two of the key committees of the Honolulu City Council.”
Menor indicated he is not seeking any office in 2020. “When my term of office at the City Council ends at the beginning of January 2021, I will continue to explore new ways to serve the community, while spending more time with my family.” The city’s term-limit law bars Menor from running for reelection to his District 9 City Council seat which runs from Mililani to Ewa Beach.
He urged Oahu voters “to get involved in the upcoming elections and to exercise their precious right to vote.”
Menor’s announcement leaves several other hopefuls who have either announced their candidacies for mayor or filed organizational papers indicating a mayoral run: businessman Keith Amemiya, Honolulu TV executive Rick Blangiardi, former state Sen. John Carroll, former U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, community advocate Choon James, and incumbent Councilwoman Kym Pine.
Former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann and former U.S. Rep. Charles Djou have said in recent weeks that they are still deciding their political plans for 2020 and have not ruled out mayoral runs.