Battle of the Titans

16 Jul

We’ve been known to make fun of our state legislature.
Quite a bit, actually.

Heaven knows, it sometimes deserves it.

But it’s only fair to point out there are some very good state lawmakers in that building.

People who ran for office for all the right reasons, who are hard-working, honest and effective.

Because of redistricting, two of the best are now having to run against each other.

One will be out of office and we’ll all be the poorer for it.

The state Reapportionment Commission revised political boundaries for Oahu House and Senate districts based on population shifts over the past ten years.

The changes force six pairs of House incumbents against one another for re-election.

It also forces a face-off between two incumbent senators.

Brian Taniguchi and Carol Fukunaga are among the best of the best.

Taniguchi has represented Manoa, Moiliili, McCully and Makiki since the early 90’s.

Fukunaga has been representing Makiki, Ala Moana and McCully for just as long.

Each sits on important committees and neither has been tainted by the craziness that infects so many politicians.

It’s a shame to lose either.

As to how it might all play out, let’s look at some numbers.

If you break down the population in the new Senate district, it could be said a small majority probably are for Fukunaga because so many of those in her old district are now included.

But that really doesn’t mean anything – you have to start by looking at those who are registered to vote.

Of those people in the new district it’s about 60/40 with about 60 percent of all registered voters coming from Taniguchi’s old district.

In other words, a higher percentage of people in Taniguchi’s old district are registered than Fukunaga’s.

Registered voters also don’t tell the entire story because less than half of them actually cast a ballot.

Breaking down the numbers further to just include registered voters in the new district, who voted in the last election, we see about 70 percent supported Taniguchi and 30 percent Fukunaga.

Does this mean he will win?

Hardly.

But it does mean if you have to place your money on one of them, Taniguchi is probably the best bet.

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