Les Ihara, Jr.

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Les Ihara, Jr.
Les Ihara.jpg
Hawaii State Senate District 10
Incumbent
In office
1994 - Present
Term ends
November 8, 2016
Years in position 20
PartyDemocratic
Leadership
Senate Majority Leader
1997 - 2000
Compensation
Base salary$46,272/year
Per diem$150/day
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First elected1994
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Hawaii House of Representatives
1986 - 1994
Education
Bachelor'sUniversity of Hawaii (1975)
Personal
BirthdayApril 19, 1951
Place of birthHonolulu, Hawaii
Websites
Office website
Personal website
Campaign website
CandidateVerification
Les Ihara, Jr. (b. April 19, 1951) is a Democratic member of the Hawaii State Senate, representing District 10. He was first elected to the chamber in 1994. From 1995 to 1996 he was Senate Majority Floor Leader and from 1997 to 2000 he was Senate Majority Leader. He is currently Majority Policy Leader.

Ihara was a delegate and Vice President of the State Constitutional Convention in 1978. He was Chair of the Oahu Democratic Party from 1982 to 1984 and again from 1990 to 1994. He then served in the Hawaii House of Representatives from 1986 to 1994. From 1993 to 1994 he was House Majority Floor Leader.

Biography

Ihara earned his BA in Liberal Studies from the University of Hawaii in 1975. His professional experience includes working as Coordinator for the Windward Environmental Resource Center from 1973 to 1976, working as Communications Director for the State Litter Control Office from 1979 to 1982, and working as Executive Director for the Community Work Day Program Incorporated from 1983 to 1986.

Committee assignments

2013-2014

At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Ihara served on the following committees:

Hawaii Committee Assignments, 2013
Energy and Environment
Judiciary and Labor

2011-2012

In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Ihara served on these committees:

2009-2010

In the 2009-2010 legislative session, Ihara served on these committees:

Issues

Steven Tyler Act

On January 18, 2013, Senator Jamie Kalani English introduced Senate Bill 465, the proposed "Steven Tyler Act." According the bill, "if [a] person captures or intends to capture, in a manner that is offensive to a reasonable person, through any means a visual image, sound recording, or other physical impression of another person while that person is engaging in a personal or familial activity with a reasonable expectation of privacy," he or she would be liable for the "civil action of constructive invasion of privacy." He or she could be sued for general damages, special damages, and punitive damages worth triple the combined general and special damages. According to the Section 1 of the bill, the new law would especially help celebrities and be named after Steven Tyler, who owns a vacation home on the island of Maui, in honor of his "contribution to the arts in Hawai‘i and throughout the world."[1] The Senate passed the SB 465 on March 5 by a vote of 23-2, and the bill was sent on to the House. Only Ihara and Senator Samuel Slom voted against the bill.[2] Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie, the Hawaii Tourism Authority, Tyler, Fleetwood Mac drummer Mick Fleetwood, and a number of other celebrities endorsed SB 465. They argued that the paparazzi invade the privacy of celebrities who come to Hawaii to vacation in peace by filming and photographing the celebrities on their private property and that this bill would help promote celebrity tourism in the state. The American Civil Liberties Union, Hawaii Attorney General David M. Louie, the Society of Professional Journalists, and The New York Times opposed the bill, claiming that it would be unconstitutional and suppress journalism.[3][4]

Campaign themes

2012

Ihara's campaign website listed the following issues:[5]

  • Education
"[R]eform of education system is needed to prepare our youth for the global knowledge economy"
  • Economy
"[O]ur economy needs restructuring to allow a knowledge industry to grow and develop in Hawaii"
  • Elderly
"[A]n expanded senior service industry is needed to enable our elderly to 'age in place' with dignity"
  • Environment
"Hawaii's natural environment should not be sacrificed based on claims of a greater good"
  • Politics
"[P]olitical reforms are needed to reduce coersion [sic] and self-dealing in public decision-making"

Elections

2012

See also: Hawaii State Senate elections, 2012

Ihara won re-election in the 2012 election for Hawaii State Senate District 10. Ihara ran unopposed in the August 11 Democratic primary and defeated Eric Marshall (R) in the general election which took place on November 6, 2012. [6][7][8]

Hawaii State Senate, District 10, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngLes Ihara, Jr. Incumbent 77.7% 13,703
     Republican Eric Marshall 22.3% 3,934
Total Votes 17,637

2010

See also: Hawaii State Senate elections, 2010

Ihara won re-election to the 9th District Seat in 2010. He defeated Daniel Davidson in the September 18 primary. Ihara defeated Lisa Shorba (R) in the general election on November 2, 2010.[9]

Hawaii State Senate, District 9
2010 General election results
Candidates Votes Percent
Green check mark transparent.png Les Ihara, Jr. (D) 11,058 64.7%
Lisa Shorba (R) 4,461 26.1%

2006

On November 7, 2006, Ihara won re-election to the Hawaii State Senate from Hawaii's 9th Senate District. Ihara received 11,599 votes, defeating Gladys Hayes, who received 3,408 votes. Additionally, 1,024 "Blank" votes and 2 "Over" votes were cast in the election.[10] Ihara raised $62,800 for his campaign; Hayes raised $1,331.[11]

Hawaii State Senate, District 9 (2006)
Candidates Votes Percent
Green check mark transparent.png Les Ihara, Jr. (D) 11,599 72.3%
Gladys Hayes 3,408 21.3%
Blank 1,024 6.4%
Over 2 0.0%

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Ihara is available dating back to 1998. Based on available campaign finance records, Ihara raised a total of $247,418 during that time period. This information was last updated on 6/25/2013.[12]

Les Ihara, Jr.'s Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Hawaii State Senate, District 10 Won $29,650
2010 Hawaii State Senate, District 9 Won $44,328
2008 Hawaii State Senate, District 9 Not up for election $18,622
2006 Hawaii State Senate, District 9 Won $62,800
2004 Hawaii State Senate, District 9 Not up for election $13,464
2002 Hawaii State Senate, District 9 Won $20,219
1998 Hawaii State Senate, District 10 Won $58,335
Grand Total Raised $247,418

2012

Ihara won re-election to the Hawaii State Senate in 2012. During that election cycle, Ihara raised a total of $29,650.
Hawaii State Senate 2012 election - Campaign Contributions
Top contributors to Les Ihara, Jr.'s campaign in 2012
Hawaii Association of Realtors$2,000
Cooke, Samuel A$1,000
Cooke, Samuel A$1,000
Ro, Kelvin$1,000
Dods Jr, Walter A$750
Total Raised in 2012$29,650
Source:Follow the Money

2010

Ihara won re-election to the Hawaii State Senate in 2010. During that election cycle, Ihara raised a total of $44,328.

2008

Ihara was not up for election to the Hawaii State Senate in 2008. During that election cycle, Ihara raised a total of $18,622.

2006

Ihara won re-election to the Hawaii State Senate in 2006. During that election cycle, Ihara raised a total of $62,800.

2004

Ihara was not up for election to the Hawaii State Senate in 2004. During that election cycle, Ihara raised a total of $13,464.

2002

Ihara won re-election to the Hawaii State Senate in 2002. During that election cycle, Ihara raised a total of $20,219.

1998

Ihara won election to the Hawaii State Senate in 1998. During that election cycle, Ihara raised a total of $58,335.

Personal

Ihara has a wife, Catherine Cooke.

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References

Political offices
Preceded by
Brian Taniguchi (D)
Hawaii State Senate District 10
2012–present
Succeeded by
NA
Preceded by
-
Hawaii State Senate District 9
1994–2012
Succeeded by
Samuel Slom (R)