Latest Articles

  • Hawaii 1st Congressional District: Takai Defeats Djou

    · By Nathan Eagle

    Democrat Mark Takai has defeated Republican Charles Djou in the race to represent urban Oahu in Congress for the next two years.

    With all precincts reporting Tuesday evening, Takai was up over Djou, 51 percent to 48 percent. Djou picked up a little ground in the third wave of results that were released just after 10 p.m. but not enough to flip the results.

    “We started this race Aug. 7, 2013 — 15 months ago,” Takai told supporters at the Japanese Cultural Center in Moiliili, where Democrats gathered to celebrate their

  • Civil Beat Poll: Takai-Djou Race Too Close To Call

    · By Chad Blair

    Democrat Mark Takai and Republican Charles Djou are headed for a photo finish in the race for Hawaii’s 1st Congressional District.

    The candidates are tied at 45 percent each, with 9 percent of the electorate still undecided — even with election day just one week away.

    Matt Fitch, executive director of Merriman River Group, which conducted The Civil Beat Poll, said recent elections give an indication of where this contest might be headed.

    “We’re seeing similar trends from how Djou has fared in previous elections and how Takai fared in the primary,” he said. “Takai got stronger closer to Election Day.

  • Hawaii Candidates for Congress Fundraise to the Finish Line

    · By Nathan Eagle

    Mark Takai needed more campaign money — and he got it.

    The Democratic candidate for Hawaii’s 1st Congressional District raised just over $200,000 — including $85,000 from political action committees, or PACs — during the first half of October, according to the latest filings with the Federal Election Commission.

    His Republican opponent, Charles Djou, pulled in $72,000 but outspent Takai by almost $82,000 during the same 15-day period.

    Charles Djou and Mark Takai share a laugh during a congressional debate at the Plaza Club in Honolulu on

  • Ad Watch: Takai Plays the Veterans Card. Again.

    · By Chad Blair

    Editor’s Note: It’s an election year and that means lots of political commercials. Ad Watch is an occasional Civil Beat series in which we help you understand what you’re seeing and hearing when it comes to campaign messages from Hawaii candidates.

    There will be no more statewide televised debates between Democrat Mark Takai and Republican Charles Djou before Nov. 4.

    To learn more about Takai, the state representative, and Djou, the former state representative and former Honolulu City Councilman, running for the 1st Congressional District many voters will have to rely on mailers and television

  • Takai Campaign Raises More Money, But Djou Has More Cash on Hand

    · By Nathan Eagle

    Democrat Mark Takai has raised and spent hundreds of thousands of dollars more than Republican Charles Djou in their tight race to represent urban Oahu in Congress for the next two years.

    But Djou had more than twice as much cash on hand in his campaign account — $626,191 to be exact — at the end of the most recent reporting period with the Federal Elections Commission.

    With absentee ballots in the mail and early walk-in voting set to start Tuesday, Takai and Djou have their campaigns operating at full speed. Expect an uptick

  • Djou Says He’s a ‘Pragmatist’ Ready to ‘Get Things Done’ for Hawaii

    · By Nathan Eagle

    Editor’s Note: Civil Beat sat down with Mark Takai, Charles Djou’s Democratic opponent, in September. Read the story from that interview here.

    Charles Djou is so close to possibly winning a seat in Congress that he can almost smell the cherry blossoms that will be blooming next spring in Washington, D.C.

    With less than a month until Election Day, he and his supporters have the campaign running at full tilt — from candidate forums and coffee hours to phone banking and sign waving.

    Djou, a Republican running against Democratic state

  • Hawaii Candidates for Congress Seek More Money as Election Nears

    · By Nathan Eagle

    Republican Charles Djou and Democrat Mark Takai are making last-minute pitches for more money as their tight congressional race enters its final 35 days.

    They have until Oct. 15 to submit their quarterly campaign finance reports to the Federal Elections Commission, but Tuesday marked the end of the fundraising period.

    Both candidates vying to represent urban Oahu in Congress for the next two years want to make a big showing when the reports become public next month. Not only is it important in order to keep TV ads on air and mailers

  • Takai Says He Wants to ‘Knock Some Sense’ into Congress

    · By Nathan Eagle

    Editor’s Note: Civil Beat plans to sit down with Mark Takai’s opponent, Republican Charles Djou, in early October, which was his earliest opportunity.

    Mark Takai is tired.

    He woke up at 3:30 a.m. Thursday to start calling people on the East Coast about his bid for Congress, reaching out to labor organizations for support and thanking others who helped him win the Aug. 9 primary over six other Democrats.

    Takai has worked the equivalent of a full day before arriving at Civil Beat’s office for an hourlong Editorial Board meeting later

  • Chad Blair: Republicans on Parade

    · By Chad Blair

    I’ve seen this parade before.

    Dozens of hopeful candidates from diverse walks of life, hopeful, excited, sporting banners and signs and buttons and T-shirts and stickers and websites, all believing this will be the election year that Hawaii elects more than a token representation of Republicans.

    I saw this parade just two years ago, when Linda Lingle and Charles Djou went down to defeat in runs for the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.

    I saw it as well in 2010, when Djou lost his re-election bid for the 1st Congressional District, Cam

  • Djou vs. Takai: An Early Look at the 1st Congressional District Race

    · By Nathan Eagle

    Mark Takai and Charles Djou have much in common. They’re middle-aged family men who grew up in Hawaii, serve in the military and have years of experience in elected office.

    But there are fundamental differences between the two candidates that will help urban Oahu voters decide Nov. 4 who they want to represent them in Congress for the next two years.

    The race to replace U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, who left her post for an unsuccessful Senate run, is shaping up to be competitive. Djou is anxious to return

  • Hawaii Congressional Districts: Takai Triumphs

    · By Nathan Eagle

    Voters have given state Rep. Mark Takai the nod over Senate President Donna Mercado Kim and five other candidates vying for the Democratic slot in the 1st Congressional District race.

    With most precincts reporting by early Sunday morning, Takai was the winner with 43 percent of the vote, 52,719 people casting their ballots for him. Kim had 27 percent, followed by Honolulu City Council members Stanley Chang at 10 percent, Ikaika Anderson at 6 percent and Joey Manahan at 4 percent. State Sen. Will Espero had 4 percent and human rights advocate Kathryn Xian had 3 percent.


  • Republican Djou Leads CD1 Money Race as Democrats Slug It Out

    · By Nathan Eagle

    Republican Charles Djou now has more campaign cash on hand than any other candidate running in the 1st Congressional District race, according to pre-primary reports filed Monday with the Federal Elections Commission.

    The reports, which cover July 1 through July 20, show Djou has a $64,000 edge over Senate President Donna Mercado Kim, a frontrunner among the seven Democrats vying for the seat. He has $439,707 in his campaign war chest.

    One other Republican is running, Allan Levene, but Djou is expected to win by a large margin in