Outlook: Solid Republican
November 8, 2006 Update:
As the Crystal Ball predicted, Gov. Linda Lingle (R)
It’s Lingle all the way. Governor Linda Lingle is accomplishing the very difficult act of winning a second term as a Republican candidate in this heavily Democratic state. She has dodged all of the bullets, and the remaining potential Democratic candidates are quite weak.
One of the least likely states for a Republican resurgence is Hawaii, so reliably Democratic that all governors since 1962 have had a D next to their name–until 2002. Republican Linda Lingle, who barely failed to oust an incumbent Democrat in 1998, won the open seat contest for the statehouse in 2002, and she has maintained her popularity during her first term.
No prominent Democrat has yet emerged to take her on in 2006. But be careful, dear readers. Hawaii almost reflexively votes Democratic, and no GOP candidate–even a popular incumbent–is ever safe here.
Linda Lingle (I) – Republican – current governor and former mayor of Maui County
Randall Iwase – Democrat – former state Senator
William Aila – Democrat – served as Wai’anae’s harbor master for nearly two decades
George L. Berish – Republican – businessman and Vietnam veteran