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Battle for open Hawaii seat splits Democratic House groups

Hawaii voters will choose who’s apt to be the states next House member on Saturday, while its other House member and something of its Democratic senators face primary challenges.

Democratic Rep. Kai Kahele announced earlier this season he’d run for governor, a race he isnt likely to win, instead of seek another term inside your home

That exposed a six-way race for his 2nd District seat, with the contest primarily centered on state Rep. Patrick Branco and former state Sen. Jill Tokuda, who ran for lieutenant governor in 2018.

Tokuda gets the fundraising edge. She reported raising $528,000 by July 24 and had $90,000 readily available. She loaned her campaign $25,000. Branco reported raising $153,000 and had $33,000 readily available.

But theres been significant outside spending in the race which has helped to improve Brancos profile, and a split among some incumbent House Democrats about who to aid.

Outside groups, like the Congressional Hispanic Caucus BOLD PAC, the cryptocurrency-linked Web3 Forward PAC, Mainstream Democrats PAC and VoteVets, spent $598,000 supporting Branco and $603,000 opposing Tokuda. The Congressional Progressive Caucus PAC and Medicare for several PAC, that is linked with CPC Chair Rep. Pramila Jayapal, spent a combined $199,000 supporting Tokuda.

Tokuda has raised $19,000 up to now from House and Senate incumbents leadership PACs, including $5,000 from Hawaii Sen. Mazie Hirono and $4,000 from NY Rep. Mondaire Jones, in accordance with Branco has raised $7,000 from incumbents PACs, including $2,500 from Arizona Rep. Ruben Gallego and $1,500 from California Rep. Linda Sanchez.

Two Republicans may also be seeking the nomination for the next District. Joseph Webster, whose unsecured loan to his campaign makes up about $60,000 of the $62,000 he raised, told Honolulu Civil Beat he knows the race is really a longshot for a Republican and says on his campaign website he is really a Republican like youve never met before. Joseph Akana, another Republican on the ballot, ran against Kahele in 2020 and got 31 percent of the vote.

In the very first District, Rep. Ed Case, a Blue Dog Democrat who was simply first elected to the seat in 2018, faces a primary challenge from Sergio Alcubilla, a lawyer and nonprofit leader. Case reported raising $841,000 and had $475,000 readily available by July 24, while Alcubilla had raised $107,000 and had $6,000 readily available by June 30.

Our Hawaii PAC spent $24,000 supporting Alcubilla.

Three Republicans are running in the very first District, but just one single, Conrad Kress, reported any fundraising to the Federal Election Commission. Kress raised $45,000 by July 24 and had $17,000 readily available.

Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates both Hawaii House seats as Solid Democratic.

Democratic Sen. Brian Schatz also faces a primary challenge from Steve Tataii, an unbiased conflict resolution consultant. Schatz raised $4.3 million and had $3.5 million readily available by July 24, in accordance with FEC filings, while Tataii didn’t file with the FEC, meaning his campaign didn’t reach the $5,000 threshold for the money raised or spent.

Five Republicans are on the ballot to defend myself against Schatz, but just one single, Marine veteran Timothy Dalhouse, has reported raising hardly any money. Dalhouse reported raising $154,000 by July 24. Of this, $150,000 was an individual loan to his campaign.

Inside Elections also rates the Senate seat Solid Democratic.

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