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3 Former Hawai‘i Governors Endorse Kahele For Congress

March 14, 2019, 1:16 PM HST (Updated March 14, 2019, 1:16 PM)
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Former Hawaiʻi Governors John Waiheʻe, Ben Cayetano and Neil Abercrombie formally endorsed State Senator Kai Kahele on Thursday, March 14, 2019, to represent Hawai‘iʻs 2nd Congressional District in the United States House of Representatives. Governors Waiheʻe, Cayetano and Abercrombie will also serve as Honorary Co-Chairs of the Kahele for Congress Campaign Committee.

Sen. Kahele will run for the 2nd Congressional District. PC: Hawai‘i Senate Office.

“Kai Kahele is a born leader,” Waiheʻe said. “He’s a leader in his community, he’s a leader in the Legislature and he’s going to be a leader in Congress. That’s why I’m endorsing him.”

“I’ve known Kai since he was a young boy,” Abercrombie said. “I’m well aware of his upbringing and the Kahele family’s outstanding values and character. Kai has established a successful career as a pilot for Hawaiian Airlines and as a Major in the Hawaiʻi Air National Guard. As a Senator he is faithfully carrying on the legacy of his father, my dear friend Gil Kahele.”

Cayetano said Kahele exemplifies the term public servant. “He serves his community, his state and his country in uniform,” Cayetano said. “He’s mature but also young enough to build seniority in Congress. Given how small a Congressional delegation Hawaiʻi has, that’s very important.”

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Waiheʻe was Hawai‘iʻs fourth governor. He served in the Legislature and was a key member in the 1978 Constitutional Convention. Cayetano was Hawai‘i’s fifth governor. He also served in the Legislature and as Lieutenant Governor. Abercrombie was Hawai‘iʻs seventh governor. He served in the Legislature, City Council and for two decades in the U.S. House of Representatives.

“I served for ten terms in Congress and I can assure you that establishing relationships in the House of Representatives is everything,” Abercrombie said. “Kai has the ideal Congressional personality to succeed in working with 434 fellow members. And more importantly, as a life-long Big Islander, he uniquely understands the needs of the residents of the neighbor islands.”

“I am honored and gratified by the endorsements of my campaign by these great Hawaiʻi Statesmen,” Kahele said, “I am thankful that they will be a source of advice and counsel as we continue on this journey together.”

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The 2nd Congressional District encompasses Hawaiʻi Island, Maui, Moloka‘i, Lana‘i, Kaua‘i, Ni‘ihau and the rural parts of Oʻahu, including Waimanalo, Kailua, Kāneohe, the North Shore and the Leeward Coast.

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