Candidates for Honolulu mayor make final campaign push

Politics

The major candidates for Honolulu mayor — current mayor Kirk Caldwell, his Democratic challenger Peter Carlisle, and Republican candidate Charles Djou — made their final campaign push on this primary election day.

Caldwell and his supporters rode a trolley through Chinatown, waving campaign signs and greeting the public.

At one of his stops in Kaimuki, the mayor said he was feeling optimistic about the primary.

“I think we are going to be celebrating,” Caldwell said. “I think all our hard work is going to pay off — good momentum, good positive response all over this island.

“It’s a reconfirmation of the hard work — for almost four years, and whether it’s repaving more roads than ever, cleaning up up our parks, reestablishing bus routes, and even fighting really hard for rail (to go) all the way to Ala Moana. It tells you a lot of people appreciate what we are doing and, yes, there is a lot of controversy, too. It tells me it’s worth it. I want to come back for another four years and I want to finish the job that I started and really lay the foundation, the structure we have been building, so we live better on this small island decades and decades from now.”

Charles Djou and his family were also waving signs and greeting supporters. “All day long today, we have been all over the island,” he said. “I started in Kapolei, Mililani, Waipahu, Nuuanu and, of course, Hawaii Kai.”

Djou said he is cautiously optimistic about the primary results, but he feels a lot of energy from the campaign.

“I think there is a lot of momentum in our campaign,” he said, “really energetic, although I am a bit tired. It’s my volunteers who keep me going and all my supporters.”

As for former mayor Peter Carlisle, he and his wife attended a service for a close friend.

While the other candidates voted early, Carlisle went to his polling place Saturday morning to cast his vote.

“It’s been a very short, intense campaign for us,” he said, “and it’s like the seven others that have gone before. You never really know what’s going to happen at the end, and sometimes it’s a good decision and sometimes it doesn’t favor you.”

Polls are scheduled to close at 6 p.m.

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