December 23, 2008

Nominees to fill House District 9 are provided to Lingle

Filed under: Hawaii State Politics — Doug @ 6:47 pm

The Hawaii House blog introduces the three Democrats nominated to fill the seat left open upon the death of Representative Nakasone. Do all of these folks already live in District 9, or can they wait until actually selected to establish residence? I dunno. The law says that they must, so I assume the Party would not have nominated these three if they did not. I’m a bit surprised that Holter (County Chair) and Keith-Agaran (BLNR Chair, former Department Head and Deputy) both live in the only district that finds itself in need of an appointment. Dumb luck, I suppose. Not very surprised that those two were nominated, though.

Filimoe’atu, is probably the long-shot candidate if the only yardstick is name recognition, but being less of a Democratic Party “insider” may actually improve her chances of being appointed since the Governor is unlikely to be keen on naming Holter or Keith-Agaran.

I have no idea who would have the greatest support among the people of that district, but even that factor could be either a positive or a negative when you consider that the Governor will (or, if you doubt her partisan credentials, would be expected to) appoint the Democrat least likely to win election in 2010.

I reckon the major (or wannabe) power-brokers are not going to submit written comments to the Governor regarding this matter, but it would be interesting to review whatever comments are submitted. I’ll try to remember to make such a request after the January 9 (?) comment deadline is past.


  1. Doug:
    The 9th District runs from Paia-Sprecklesville precincts (where Lance lives), to Kahului-Wailuku (where Kehau and I live). If you want to look at it geographically, Lance has been a Paia resident for decades which is part of the most eastern precinct in the district; I grew up on the same street where Lance lives now. I was born, educated and have lived in Kahului — the heart of the community — for most of my life (except while in school on the mainland 1980-87 and five years working on Oahu at a law firm 1987-92 and in the first term of the Cayetano administration 1995-99); I now live in the most western precinct. Kehau says she’s lived in the same house in the heart of the district for fifty years.

    DOUG: Thanks for the clarification! Your district is unusually thick with strong nominees, then.

    Comment by Gil Keith-Agaran — December 24, 2008 @ 10:32 am

  2. I’m not a betting person but I would bet that Filimoe’atu will get the appointment. The reluctance Lingle might have, however, is that she is a strong HGEA member.

    But no matter who runs, if Kimo Apana seeks the seat in 2010, then it may very well be just a two-year stint.

    The real story here is why Apana was not on the list.

    Comment by charles — December 25, 2008 @ 10:24 am

  3. The House blog says Lingle has until February 5th to make the appointment, but I hope public opinion doesn’t accept such a possibility as reasonable. The Dems had 30 days in which to make the decision, but they expedited the process in order to get the position filled in time for the opening of the legislative session on January 21. It should be unacceptable for Lingle to drag this out beyond Opening Day.

    It will be interesting to try to figure what Lingle is figuring as she makes her choice. The District Council came up with a good batch of nominees, anyone of which would make a good rep. I’ll go with Charles’ hunch Lingle will go with Kehau Filimoe’atu. In addition to Kehau’s popularity in the district, Lingle may find it to her advantage to reach out to the Hawaiian community in an effort to repair the relations strained over the ceded lands lawsuit.

    I wonder if Speaker Say will have any influence over the choice?

    Gil Keith-Agaron is extremely qualified and has the potential of becoming a major player among Maui elected Democrats. Is that enough incentive for Lingle to pass him over?

    I think Lance Holter has the least chance of getting it. Not because he is not qualified, but because he would be a strong-willed advocate for the environment, public-financing of elections and other reforms unlikely to be popular with either the Guv or the legislative leadership.

    The appointment process still allows for some “gaming of the system,” but what a breath of fresh air compared to stench surrounding Lingle’s appointment of Bev Harbin to fill Ken Hiraki’s seat.

    DOUG: Yup, the contrast could not be more stark, could it?

    Comment by Kolea — December 26, 2008 @ 1:48 pm

  4. As far as Calvin Say’s influence: slim to none and slim just left town.

    Comment by charles — December 27, 2008 @ 10:20 pm

  5. Gil – why on earth do you want the seat? You’re TOO smart for it.

    Please dont misread – I hope you are selected. To me, you’re clearly the most qualified. Pretty much overqualified, actually.

    For that exact reason, why on earth would you subject yourself to, well, all of it?

    Comment by hipoli — December 28, 2008 @ 11:23 am

  6. Hipoli:
    Two quotes from William Sloane Coffin and one from Fred Benteen:
    “It does seem to be the case, in the long if not the short run, that life gives back what we pour into it. Those who consider the world unfriendly are apt themselves to be pretty unfriendly.” CREDO 121
    “One shouldn’t be too upset about the way the ball bounces if one has dropped it oneself.” CREDO 122
    “Mistakes were made.” Fred Benteen, Capt. 7 US Cal., June 1876 on being asked what happened to Custer at the Little Big Horn.

    DOUG: All well and good. One question: Do you smoke?

    Comment by Gil Keith-Agaran — December 30, 2008 @ 3:36 pm

  7. What the heck, Doug?

    Comment by hipoli — December 30, 2008 @ 10:01 pm

  8. Nope.
    Tried cigars years ago when I was pal-ing around with serial golfers, but it didn’t take.
    Happy 2009.

    Comment by Gil Keith-Agaran — December 31, 2008 @ 10:51 am

  9. “The real story here is why Apana was not on the list.”

    This may be a function of the process. In an election, Apana will be tough to beat. He is a popular and good man. Name recognition and affection play a decisive role in an election.

    But when the process is less about name recognition and instead by the criteria established by the nominating body, you can get a different result depending on what the criteria are.

    So I am assuming this is the reason.

    Comment by Karen Chun — January 9, 2009 @ 1:20 pm

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