This year’s primary election is the topic of some interesting discussions, as four councilmembers are leaving and the three incumbents face opposition from 26 other candidates.
Of the six women and 23 men on the list, 15 will be cut, leaving 14 to wrangle for the seven legislative seats.
The four council incumbents running for nomination to other offices are (in reverse alphabetical order according to last name): Randal Valenciano (D), Ron Kouchi (D), Gary Hooser (D) and Bryan Baptiste (R). All except Hooser are vying for mayor, who is shifting his focus to the State Senate.
Three council members are running for re-election: William “Kaipo” Asing (D), Daryl Kaneshiro (D) and James Kunane Tokioka (R). Asing has held his position on the council for 20 years, Kaneshiro is seeking his third term on the council and Tokioka is looking for a fourth term.
Six of the council candidates are Republicans; 12 are Democrats; one is affiliated with the Hawai’i Green Party; and 10 are Nonpartisan.
Several council candidates have previously been councilmembers, but the majority are looking to be elected to the council for the first time. John F. Barretto (R) was appointed to the council in 1982, elected in 1984 and lost a bid for mayor in 1986. JoAnn Yukimura (D) was on the council from 1976-80, 1984-88 and served as mayor from 1988-94. Maurice “Joe” Munechika (D) served on the council from 1986-94.
The ladies include Carol D. Bain (HGP), Peggy “Tutu Peggy” Field (N), Rhoda L. Libre (D), Anne M. Punohu (Donovan) (D), Deborah “JoB” Spence (N) and JoAnn A. Yukimura (D).
The men, 23 of them in all, make a much longer list. The Republicans include John F. Barretto, Jay Furfaro, John Hoff, Robert C. Measel, Jr., Gregory Smith and James Tokioka.
The candidates listed as Nonpartisans are Ray Chuan, Bob Cariffe, Nathan Hookano, Lance Miyao, Gregory Norby, Mel Rapozo, Ken Stokes and Eduardo Valenciana.
Nine men are running as Democrats: William “Kaipo” Asing, Daryl Kaneshiro, George M. Menor, Ernest Moniz, Jr., Erick T.S. Moon, Maurice “Joe” Munechika, Raymond Paler, Wallace Rezentes, Sr. and Scott Sagum.