Following the Money (to Mazie Hirono’s Campaign)

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Ed Case

BY CONGRESSMAN ED CASE (D-HAWAII 2002-2007) – Audrey and I are just back from a great four days talking story across Hawai’i Island. It’s crystal clear that folks on my home island, like the rest of us, want strong, effective leadership that’ll fix DC and get our economy and country moving forward again.

With just three months now to the August 11th primary, my opponent’s endgame is also crystal clear. We’ve already seen Part I: to run from any real debates or other joint appearances where more than a handful of voters can size us up side by side and decide which of us can get the job done.


Part II’s starting very soon: to unleash a flood of paid infomercials and attack ads throughout the media. The goal is simple: hide Mazie behind a carefully scripted and one-way smokescreen and hope voters buy it.

That’s not how a U. S. Senator can act in DC and not how a U. S. Senator should act at home. But beyond that, who’s really paying for all this, what do they want, and who’ll fight for us?

Let’s follow the money. Here are the facts:

Special interest PACs and other political committees. These mostly DC status quo defenders have contributed about $700,000 to Mazie and $10,000 to me in this race. Over our congressional careers fully 31% of Mazie’s contrbutions (almost $1.9 million) have come from PACs compared with only 8% of mine.

Mainland money. Fully 64% of all of Mazie’s PAC and “itemized” (over $200) contributions in this race have come from mainland donors, while 75% of mine have come from Hawai’i. (Candidates don’t report the names and addresses of donors of $200 or less, but if we count those my Hawai’i contribution portion is higher.)

Here’s the bottom line: whatever Mazie and her handlers say (and just yesterday one attacked “mainland special interest” money flowing into Hawai’i), Mazie’s infomercials and other endgame efforts will be bought and paid for in large part by mainland special interest money that expects everything in return and cares little for Hawai’i. That won’t produce a Senator willing and able to fix DC and fight for Hawai’i first in the Senate.