Politics of Hawaii

The politics of Hawaii are especially interesting because of a number of factors not normally observed in the continental United States.

Prior to its annexation to the United States in the year eighteen ninety eight, Hawaii was a Republic ruled by a Provisional Government for five years. This regime, established by disgruntled industrialists and businessmen, unseated a monarchial form of government that had been in place for hundreds of years. Hawaii is the fiftieth member of the Union, and was formally introduced into America as a state in the year nineteen fifty nine under a joint resolution of Congress. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, a Republican, signed the act into law soon after its passage through the legislative branch, formally changing the status of Hawaii from a territory to a state. From eighteen eighty nine until nineteen fifty nine, Hawaii was governed by an appointed governor, generally a Republican, who oversaw the functions of the territorial legislature, which, due to rather restrictive voting laws that favored land owners, also tended to by disproportionately Republican in composition. During its territorial days, Hawaii sent a non-voting delegate to the United States Congress, who was allowed to discuss bills and present speeches on behalf of Hawaii’s interests.

Upon its introduction in the Union, Hawaii was forced to severely revise its voting laws, allowing non-landed citizens, Native Hawaiians, and large numbers of immigrants the chance to influence politics. With this sudden shift in voting demographics, Democrats leapt to a commanding lead in both national and state-level legislative representation. They also seized control of the governorship, a trend which held until the election of Governor Linda Lingle in the year two thousand two. Hawaii trends consistently Democratic in national elections, and supported Hawaii native Barack Obama by a wide margin in both the primary and general contests. However, Hawaii voters tend to place an emphasis on family values and environmental preservation, which are sometimes not congruous with a single party’s platform. Local election results, especially for the City Councils and Mayorships of the neighbor islands, skew heavily towards individuals born and raised in the community.

Hawaii’s two Representatives are Neil Abercrombie (who recently declared his candidacy for governorship of the state), from District 1, and Mazie Hirono, from District 2. Hawaii’s two senators are Senator Daniel Akaka and Senator Daniel Inouye, both of which have served for several years and have never had a tightly contested general election. The current governor of Hawaii is Linda Lingle, while the mayor of Honolulu (the largest city), is Mufi Hannemann. Hannemann is considered a potential contender for either Neil Abercrombie’s Congressional Seat or the governorship in the two thousand ten elections. A proposal to install a light rail mass transit system was recently pushed through the state legislature and confirmed in a statewide referendum, effectively ending a lively public debate stemming from Mufi Hannemann’s initial proposition. Hawaii’s population and lawmakers are currently debating civil unions, cell phone use, and sustainability issues that are likely to persist for years to come.

About the Author

Honolulu real estate
– View Oahu Real Estate and

Hawaii Real Estate 24/7 – This is Hawaii’s Premier MLS home search for first time home buyers, investors.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.