Democrats Kai Kahele and incumbent Ed Case head to the U.S. congressional races to face Republicans who are relatively unknown in Hawaii politics.
State Sen. Kai Kahele enjoyed a landslide win in the race for the Democratic Party’s nomination for the 2nd Congressional District with a margin of nearly 84,000 votes over Brian Evans.
“It feels great, it’s been a long journey we started almost 20 months ago in Jan. 2019,” Kahele said. “I’m incredibly proud of all the voters who have shown that all mail-in voting works.”
Kahele, 46, son of state Sen. Gilbert Kahele, has served in the state Senate since 2016, when he was appointed by Gov. David Ige to fill the remainder of his father’s term after his death. He was elected for the first time later that year.
A pilot for Hawaiian Airlines and a lieutenant colonel in the Hawaii Air National Guard, Kahele, if elected, would be the second Native Hawaiian in Congress since statehood. The first was the late Sen. Daniel Akaka.
Kahele, a supporter of “Medicare for All,” said, “COVID-19 has now more than ever reaffirmed my belief that universal health care should be available to every man, woman and child.”
After serving nearly four months until this morning on active duty due to the COVID-19 crisis, Kahele added he looks forward to joining Hawaii’s Congressional delegation “in fighting for federal resources: financial relief for Hawaii workers, support for our businesses and health care community.”
On the Republican side of the ballot, Joe Akana led by a significant margin by late tonight and will move on to the general Election.
Incumbent U.S. Rep. Ed Case, running unopposed for the Democratic nomination for the 1st Congressional District, received 86.1% of the votes.
Ron Curtis easily topped the field of five Republicans vying to unseat Case on Nov. 3.
Case was first elected to the 1st Congressional District seat in 2018, besting then-Lt. Gov. Doug Chin and state Sen. Donna Mercado Kim. In the general election, Case won 70% of the vote against Republican Cam Cavasso.