The arrival of the second election printout from the state Office of Elections brings clarity to most state and county races.
The two races that still appear too close to call are the East Maui Council race between Bill Medeiros and Bob Carroll, which Carroll leads by less than 60 votes, and the District 11 state House race, which George Fontaine leads by less than 200 votes over Joe Bertram.
Neil Abercrombie is the new Governor of Hawaii and Brian Schatz the Lt. Governor, sending Duke Aiona and Lynn Finnegan to defeat. Rep. Mazie Hirono and Sen. Dan Inouye held onto their seats with ease, as did state Reps. Keith-Agaran, Souki, Yamashita and Mele Carroll and state Sen. Tsutsui.
The Maui Mayor’s race went to Alan Arakawa by almost 20 percent, an expected result after he picked up endorsements from primary opponents ranging from Maui Tea Party founder Marc Hodges to well-funded Randy Piltz to environmentally minded Lanai Councilmember Sol Kaho’ohalahala.
Other than the East Maui race, Maui’s new County Council looks like this: South Maui – Don Couch, who defeated Wayne Nishiki on his second try; West Maui -Elle Cochran, who pulled away from Alan Fukuyama; Makawao-Haiku-Paia – Mike White, who beat Kai Nishiki handily; Wailuku-Waihee-Waikapu – Mike Victorino, who beat Lisa Gapero even more soundly; Lanai – Riki Hokama, who easily reclaimed his old seat from Matt Mano. They’ll join Gladys Baisa (Upcountry), Danny Mateo (Molokai) and Joe Pontanilla (Kahului), who ran unopposed.
Still no big surprises, based on primary results and the sense of momentum in the weeks before the election. Some might have expected Kai Nishiki to put up more of a fight against White, but the only real intrigue is the squeaker between Medeiros and Carroll, two very similar candidates who have taken turns holding the East Maui seat.
Keep following us on Twitter, and check out this week’s print edition for more coverage. And mahalo to everyone who voted!