Hawaii gubernatorial election, 2010

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In the Hawaii gubernatorial election of 2010, held on November 2, 2010, Democrat Neil Abercrombie defeated Republican Duke Aiona. Incumbent Governor Linda Lingle, a Republican, was term-limited.

Following the September 18, 2010 primary elections, Abercrombie beat Honolulu mayor Muffi Hannemann to become the Democratic nominee. Duke Aiona had no substantial primary opposition and easily won the GOP nomination.

As Republican incumbent Linda Lingle was term limited, the race was an open contest. On the Democratic side, Neil Abercrombie and Muffi Hannemann wrote a fresh act to an old political quarrel that dates back to 1986, when Hannemann beat Abercrombie in a special election to finish a gubernatorial term. At its end, the Democratic primary battle fell low enough to see Hannemann, a Hawaiian native with a Japanese wife, criticizing Abercrombie, a New York native whose wife is Caucasian, for lacking ethnic ties to the island.[1]

November 2, 2010 general election results

As of November 16, 2010, all precincts are reported and counted, and the final statement of vote is available.[2]

2010 Hawaii gubernatorial general election
Party Candidate Vote Percentage
     Democratic Party Approveda Neil Abercrombie 57.79%
     Republican Party Duke Aiona 40.82%
     Independent Daniel H. Cunningham 0.33%
     Independent Thomas W. "Tom" Pollard 0.33%
     - spoilt ballots 0.73%
Total Votes 385,385

Inauguration and transition

Inaugural date

Hawaii has one of the earliest gubernatorial inaugurations in the Union. The argument for having the governor take office so early is to give him time to prepare legislation and a budget before the general assembly sits. Governor-elect Abercrombie and Lieutenant Governor-elect Brian E. Schatz will be sworn in at noon, local time, on December 6, 2010.

Event planner Karey Oura Kapoi, who served a Abercrombie's campaign coordinator in Maui, was announced as the head of the Inaugural planning committee. As is tradition in Hawaii, the actual inauguration took place on the grounds of Iolani Palace.[3]

Transition team

Governor Neil Abercrombe's transition website was at NewDayHawaii.org. On November 4, 2010, Abercrombie named his campaign manager, Bill Kaneko, as head of the transition effort.[4]

The incoming administration released two monographs, both available through the transition website, outlining the administration's agenda. A New Day in Hawaii addressed economic and educational policy and long term planning. This was supplemented by Recovery and Reinvestment, outlining Hawaii's fiscal situation and the proposed implementation of a solution to economic problems.

Appointments in the Abercrombie Administration

Governor Abercrombie named a Chief of Staff and Deputy Chief of Staff for his administration. Campaign operations manager Amy Asselbaye joined the administration as Chief of Staff. Immediately under Asselbaye, as Deputy Chief of Staff to the Governor, is Andrew Aoki, deputy campaign manager during Abercrombie's election bid.[5]

Asselbaye was set to manage cabinet appointments and policy implementation while Aoki was charged with policy planning and strategy.

September 18, 2010 primary

2010 Race for Governor - Democrat Primary[6]
Candidates Percentage
Neil Abercrombie (D) 59.3%
Mufi Hannemann (D) 37.7%
Arturo P. Reyes (D) 0.6%
Van K. Tanabe (D) 0.6%
Miles Shiratori (D) 0.4%
Total votes 239,991
2010 Race for Governor - Republican Primary[7]
Candidates Percentage
Duke Aiona (R) 93.00%
James S. Carroll (R) 4.5%
Total votes 45,687
2010 Race for Governor – Non -Partisan Primary[8]
Candidates Percentage
Thomas Pollard (NP) 20.3%
Paul Manner (NP) 14.4%
Tony Clapes (NP) 7.3%
(blank votes) 57.9%
(all other) 0.1%
Total votes 45,687

Race ratings

See also: Gubernatorial elections 2010, Race tracking

2010 Race Rankings Hawaii
Race Tracker Race Rating
The Cook Political Report[9] Lean Democratic
Congressional Quarterly Politics[10] Likely Democratic
Larry J. Sabato's Crystal Ball[11] Lean Democrat
Rasmussen Reports Gubernatorial Scorecard[12] Toss-up
The Rothenberg Political Report[13] Toss-up Tilting Democratic
Overall Call Democratic


3. Rothenberg moved races from "Lean Democrat" to "Toss-up Tilting Democrat" on October 28th.

2. Larry J. Sabato moved races from "Likely Democrat" to "Lean Democrat" on October 28th.

1. Rasmussen moved race from "Solid Democratic" to "Toss-up" following October 15th polling.

Primary election polling

National level firms gave Hawaii sparse attention, perhaps as the governor's race was so widely presumed to be the Democrats' race to lose. Rasmussen found any Democrat enjoying a substantial lead over any Republican in hypothetical pairings ahead of the September primary.

2010 Race for Hawaii Governor - Rasmussen Reports[14]
Date Reported Aiona (R) Abercrombie (D) Other Don't Know
June 24, 2010[15] 32% 58% 3% 6%
Aiona (R) Hannemann (D) Other Don't Know
June 24, 2010[16] 30% 52% 9% 9%
Date Reported Carroll (R) Abercrombie (D) Other Don't Know
June 24, 2010[17] 30% 59% 4% 6%
Date Reported Carroll (R) Hannemann (D) Other Don't Know
June 24, 2010[18] 23% 57% 9% 11%
Date Reported Aiona (R) Abercrombie (D) Other Don't Know
March 24, 2010[19] 31% 54% 6% 9%
Aiona (R) Hannemann (D) Other Don't Know
March 24, 2010[20] 29% 50% 14% 7%
(Sample)[21] n=500 MoE=+/- 4.5% p=0.05


The November Ballot – Who Made It? Hawaii[22]
Nominee Affiliation
Neil Abercrombie Democrat
James R. "Duke" Aiona, Jr. Republican
Daniel H. Cunningham Free Energy
Thomas W. "Tom" Pollard Non-Partisan
This lists candidates who won their state's primary or convention, or who were unopposed, and who were officially certified for the November ballot by their state's election authority.

The Hawaiian Secretary of State maintained a list of all candidates, available online.[23]


  • Former U.S. Congressman Neil Abercrombie, holds a Ph.D. in American Studies and has spent of his life in Hawaiian politics. Preferring technology over tradition, Abercrombie made his initial announcement of candidacy on Twitter, following with a formal press release the next day.[24] He has made much of his close tie to Barack Obama.
  • Hawaiian native Muliufi F. Hanneman, the Mayor of Honolulu, returned to the elementary school he once attended to announce his candidacy in May of 2010.[25]
  • Arturo P. Reyes
  • Miles F. Shiratori, a lifeguard instructor
  • Van K. Tanabe, who previously ran in 2006, was again a contender.
  • Sesa P. Toelupa

Free Energy Party

  • Daniel H. Cunningham


  • Linda Lingle's Lt. Governor James R. "Duke" Aiona, Jr., an attorney by trade who served as a judge before his election alongside Governor Lingle in 2002. He announced his intention to seek the governor's office in 2007 and began fundraising early on.[26]
  • Former state senator John S. Carroll

Withdrawn Republican candidates

  • Lancelot H. Lincoln
  • Businessman and consultant Christopher B. Steele


  • Chris Britos
  • Anthony L. Clapes
  • Khistina Dejean
  • Paul A. Manner ran for the 1st Hawaiian Congressional District in addition to seeking the governorship.
  • Thomas W. Pollard is a physician and member of the USAF Reserves.
  • Grayson L. Wideman

Campaign ads

Duke Aiona' 'Two Live' ad.

Neil Abercrombie' 'The Democratic Ticket 2010' ad.

Republican Governor's Association' 'Energy' ad.

Gubernatorial electoral history

1998 Gubernatorial Results[27]
Candidates Percentage
Lingle (R) 48.2%
Caetano (D) 49.5%
Peabody (L) 1.1%
Total votes 412,520
2002 Gubernatorial Results[28]
Candidates Percentage
Lingle (R) 51.1%
Hirona (D) 46.6%
Hill (NL) 0.7%
Ryan (L) o.4%
Brewer (N) o.3%
Cunningham (F) o.1%
Total votes 385,457
2006 Gubernatorial Results[29]
Candidates Percentage
Lingle (R)' 61.7%
Iwase (D) 34.9%
Brewer (G) 1.6%
Daniel (L) 0.5%
Total votes 348,751

Presidential electoral history

2000 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
George W. Bush (R) 37.5%
Al Gore (D) 55.8%
2004 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
George W. Bush (R) 45.3%
John Kerry (D) 54.0%
2008 Presidential Results[30]
Candidates Percentage
John McCain (R) 26.6%
Barack Obama (D) 71.8%

1992 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
George H.W. Bush (R) 36.7%
Bill Clinton (D) 48.1%
1996 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
Bob Dole (R) 31.6%
Bill Clinton (D) 56.9%

See also

Eternal links

Candidate pages


  1. The Washington Post, "Hawaii's Aloha spirit is being tested in Democratic primary for governor," September 16, 2010
  2. Hawaii Office of Elections, "GENERAL ELECTION - State of Hawaii – Statewide," updated November 16, 2010 at 17:22:48, accessed November 29, 2010
  3. New Day Hawaii, "Abercrombie Announces Leader to Plan Inaugural Events," November 11, 2010
  4. New Day Hawaii, "Abercrombie Announces Transition Plan," November 4, 2010
  5. [ New Day Hawaii, "Abercrombie Fills Top Two Positions in Governor’s Office," November 5, 2010]
  6. [Hawaii Office of Elections Hawaii Office of Elections, “PRIMARY ELECTION 2010 - State of Hawaii – Statewide”, September 19, 2010]
  7. [Hawaii Office of Elections Hawaii Office of Elections, “PRIMARY ELECTION 2010 - State of Hawaii – Statewide”, September 19, 2010]
  8. [Hawaii Office of Elections Hawaii Office of Elections, “PRIMARY ELECTION 2010 - State of Hawaii – Statewide”, September 19, 2010]
  9. The Cook Political, “Governors: Race Ratings”
  10. CQ Politics, “2010 Race Ratings: Governors”
  11. Larry J. Sabato's Crystal Ball', “2010 Governor Ratings”
  12. Rasmussen Reports', “Election 2010: Scorecard Ratings”
  13. Rothenberg Political Report, “Governor Ratings”
  14. Rasmussen Reports, “State Profiles: Hawaii”, accessed August 30, 2010 (dead link)
  15. Rasmussen Reports, “Hawaii Governor: Democrats Remain Far Ahead”, June 30, 2010
  16. Rasmussen Reports, “Hawaii Governor: Democrats Remain Far Ahead”, June 30, 2010
  17. Rasmussen Reports, “Hawaii Governor: Democrats Remain Far Ahead”, June 30, 2010
  18. Rasmussen Reports, “Hawaii Governor: Democrats Remain Far Ahead”, June 30, 2010
  19. Rasmussen Reports, “Hawaii Governor: Two Top Democrats Well Ahead of GOP’s Aiona”, March 26, 2010
  20. Rasmussen Reports, “Hawaii Governor: Two Top Democrats Well Ahead of GOP’s Aiona”, March 26, 2010
  21. [More complete methodology and sampling tabs are available at www.RasmussenReports.com]
  22. [Hawaii Office of Elections Hawaii Office of Elections, “PRIMARY ELECTION 2010 - State of Hawaii – Statewide”, September 19, 2010]
  23. Office of Elections, State of Hawaii, "Candidate List, July 1, 2010," accessed July 2, 2010 (dead link)
  24. Neil Abercrombie for Governor, "Neil announces, I'm running for governor," March 9, 2009
  25. Mufi Hanneman for Governor, "It is Official: Mufi Hannemann for Governor," May 27, 2010
  26. Aiona for Governor, "Gubernatorial fundraising in full swing," June 29, 2009
  27. Hawaii Secretary of State, “General/OHA - STATE OF HAWAII - Statewide”, certified November 4, 1998
  28. 'Hawaii Secretary of State, “General Election 2002 - General/OHA - STATE OF HAWAII - Statewide”, certified November 6, 2002
  29. , Hawaii Secretary of State, “General Election 2006 - State of Hawaii - Statewide”, certified November 20, 2006
  30. Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections', accessed July 28, 2010