Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie suffered a massive personal defeat in the state’s Democratic primary Saturday, losing the first step of his reelection bid by more than 2-to-1. But Abercrombie’s youthful political legacies may have survived him.
Abercrombie, 76, had an incongruous mission as the second-oldest governor in the country: to inject more youth into the top ranks of the Hawaii Democratic Party. And though he lost big, two major appointees in their 40s, including Sen. Brian Schatz, have fared much better against challengers in their 60s.
Schatz’s race is too close to call, but the Senate’s second-youngest member led Rep. Colleen Hanabusa in the Democratic primary by nearly 1,800 with votes from just two storm-delayed precincts left to count after Saturday. Meanwhile, Lt. Gov. Shan Tsutsui, the man Abercrombie appointed to succeed Schatz as his No. 2, cleared his primary challenge easily.
That’s a big foothold for a youth movement in a state whose top political cast remained unchanged for a long time before this election cycle. Remarkably, at this time two years ago, the septuagenarian Abercrombie was the young one among Hawaii’s top officials, compared with multi-decade Senate veteran Daniel Akaka and the unofficial head of the state Democratic Party, Sen. Daniel Inouye, who spent nearly a half-century in the Senate and asked before he died in 2012 to have Hanabusa succeed him.
There are some stylistic and ideological differences between the younger and older sections of Hawaii’s Democratic Party, though Schatz and Hanabusa would have voted very similarly in the Senate. But Abercrombie noted repeatedly that Schatz would have a longer time to build up seniority and aid a post-Inouye rebuilding of the congressional delegation.
“That’s his commitment in being in office,” an Abercrombie adviser told National Journal in an interview last year. “He wants to be a transitional governor for generational change.”
Abercrombie is not going to be in office much longer after losing the gubernatorial primary to state Sen. David Ige, himself a three-decade state legislator. But the poster boys for Abercrombie’s Democratic youth movement may lessen the sting with their primary performances.
What We're Following See More »
The four Senators released a joint statement, saying in part, "There are provisions in this draft that repreesnt an improvement to our current health care system, but it does not appear this draft as written will accomplish the most important promise we made to Americans: to repeal Obamacare and lower their health care costs."
"President Trump will meet with the International Olympic Committee Thursday amid a battle between Los Angeles and Paris for the right to host the 2024 games. The meeting at the White House will come roughly three months before members of the IOC vote on which of the two cities will welcome the Olympics during what could be the final year of Trump's presidency, should he win re-election. Trump has remained largely silent on whether he plans to fight for the U.S. to receive the games in 2024."
Trump tweeted Thursday afternoon, "With all of the recently reported electronic surveillance, intercepts, unmasking and illegal leaking of information, I have no idea whether there are "tapes" or recordings of my conversations with James Comey, but I did not make, and do not have, any such recordings."
"The hacking of state and local election databases in 2016 was more extensive than previously reported, including at least one successful attempt to alter voter information, and the theft of thousands of voter records that contain private information like partial Social Security numbers. ... Congressional investigators are probing whether any of this stolen private information made its way to the Trump campaign. ... The House Intelligence Committee plans to seek testimony this summer from Brad Parscale, the digital director of the Trump campaign."