Last week, the Maui Weekly provided its readers with snapshots of two U.S. Senate candidates-former Hawai'i Gov. Linda Lingle and current U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono-who seek to U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka's shoes in the Primary Election next fall.
This week, we will take a closer look at two more contenders who have also declared their candidacies: former U.S. Rep. Ed Case and former Hawai'i State Sen. and Rep. John Carroll.
As the race for the coveted seat on Capitol Hill continues to gain momentum, one thing is certain: voters across Maui County-and all of Hawai'i-will face some tough decisions as they head to the polls for the 2012 Primary and General Elections.
Former U.S. Congressman and U.S. Senate hopeful Ed Case and his wife, Audrey, appeared at three “Talk Story” events across the Valley Isle on Saturday, Nov. 5. “We need to make some major decisions,” he said. “I don’t believe in sweeping things under the rug, telling people things are going to be okay.” Born and raised in Hilo, Case, a Democrat, was educated in public and private schools before amassing 25 years of private sector experience and 20 years of government experience.
But these Senate hopefuls aren't wasting any time, sharing their platforms with potential voters statewide. Here is a brief political snapshot of candidates Ed Case and John Carroll:
Rep. Ed Case
To some, it may be surprising to see a former U.S. Congressman-accustomed to the hustle and bustle and accoutrements of Washington, D.C.-dining in the University of Hawai'i Maui College (UHMC) cafeteria on a Friday afternoon. But when it comes to former U.S. Rep. Ed Case, it's not so surprising. Case and his wife, Audrey, enjoyed a lunch prepared by UHMC culinary students on Friday, Nov. 4-one of the many stops they made that day while visiting the Valley Isle.
"I'm a believer in staying in touch and interacting with my constituents," he said. "I refuse to 'lose touch' if and when I go to serve the people of Hawai'i in Washington."
Born and raised in Hilo, Case was educated in public and private schools before amassing 25 years of private sector experience and 20 years of government experience. He is a father of four and a staunch advocate for encouraging young voters across the state to become engaged in the political process. During a series of "Talk Story" events across the island on Saturday, Nov. 5, Case was prepared to answer any and all questions from concerned residents.
The common message, he said, is uncertainty. "I hear people saying they are uncertain about the direction of the country people feel that Washington has just lost its way." In order to put us back on track, "We need to make some major decisions I don't believe in sweeping things under the rug-telling people things are going to be okay."
In order to right the wrongs, Case said we must acknowledge reality, look at the pros and cons of the situation at hand-and then make some serious decisions.
"We [the nation] are in a tough situation," he said, "but we've been there before, and we can get through this."
Rep. John Carroll
His campaign slogan is "Common Sense Uncommon Integrity," and it is also a motto that former Hawai'i State Rep. (and State Sen.) Carroll is determined to live by. Carroll, a Republican, is expected to face off with former Gov. Lingle for the Republican nomination in the 2012 Primary Election. Carroll's personal, political and professional resume is nothing short of impressive. Among other things, he is father of six children, with 11 grandchildren and nine great grandchildren. He is a Korean War veteran, a former Air Force fighter pilot and an operational planner who later went on to pursue a law degree to become a Military Judge Advocate. While serving as Military Judge Advocate, he received the Air Force Commendation for authoring Hawai'i's Code of Military Justice.
Carroll certainly knows the State of Hawai'i-and from the ground up. He took to the skies as a captain for Hawaiian Airlines and CEO and Chairman of Hawai'i Aviation Contract Services.
He accomplished all of this before he was elected five times to the Hawai'i State Legislature and the Hawai'i State Senate.
If elected to the U.S. Senate in 2012, Carroll pledged to address a number of issues affecting Hawai'i residents. First and foremost, he said, "[We] need a vital and growing economy created by free enterprise and renewed investment in America's (and Hawai'i's) entrepreneurial spirit"
Carroll said he also seeks to change federal laws in order to "bring our cost of living back in line the 'Matson Tax' or 'Cost of Living in Paradise' are no longer things we should simply tolerate and ignore; it can be set right."
In addition, he said, "We need to restore a voice and some representation to the rest of Hawai'i's citizens, especially on critical national issues we are facing now. Our current representation does not represent all of Hawai'i."
The 2012 Primary and General Elections may be months away, but it is never too soon to become involved in the political process, and if you haven't done so already- register to vote. Less than a year from now, the State of Hawai'i will say "aloha" to its newest junior U.S. Senator, two U.S. House Representatives from each of the state's congressional districts-and the president of the United States.
The deadline for the 2012 Primary Election Voter Registration is Thursday, July 12, and the Primary Election will be held on Saturday, Aug. 11. The deadline for the 2012 General Election Voter Registration is_Monday, Oct. 8, and the General Election will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 6.
To register to vote, visit hawaii.gov/elections/voters/registration.htm to download the WikiWiki Voter Registration (Hawai'i's registration-by-mail procedure), contact the County of Maui Office of Elections at (808) 270-7749 or visit the State of Hawai'i Office of Elections Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/elections808.