Could Hawaii's 2nd District Go From Most Liberal to Most Conservative?
WASHINGTON — Former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann stands out as the most socially conservative Democrat in the race for Hawaii's 2nd Congressional District, according to questionnaires that he and four other candidates filled out for Civil Beat.
He's also the front-runner to replace Mazie Hirono, arguably Hawaii's most liberal congressional delegate. Hirono has represented the district since 2007 but is vacating her post to run for U.S. Senate.
How much might the views of the person representing the 2nd district change? To find out, Civil Beat asked the five candidates where they stood on seven issues. Candidates revealed a wide range of views on social issues like same-sex marriage, abortion and access to emergency contraceptives.
Hannemann, who now serves as president of the Hawaii Lodging & Tourism Association; and Hilo attorney Bob Marx detailed positions that put them on the more conservative side of the spectrum.
Office of Hawaiian Affairs advocate Esther Kiaaina, Honolulu attorney Rafael del Castillo and Honolulu City Council member Tulsi Gabbard took more traditionally liberal stances, with Kiaaina arguably the most definitively left-leaning.
Gabbard's defense of Roe v. Wade and support of same-sex marriage represent a significant shift from her conservative roots.
Here's a question-by-question rundown of how the candidates answered Civil Beat's survey, with complete responses from each candidate footnoted at the bottom of the page.