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Former City Council chair criticized by constituent at Lt. Gov. campaign launch

Published: Oct. 12, 2021 at 6:53 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Another well-known name in Hawaii’s political scene has officially entered the race for Lieutenant Governor.

Former Honolulu City Council Chair Ikaika Anderson launched his campaign for the state position Tuesday.

His campaign kick-off at Kailua Beach Park was met with the vocal scrutiny of a constituent who disapproved of Anderson’s previous work.

The man claimed Anderson’s record on the council did not reflect the voice of the people in the district when it came to matters of the Honolulu rail, vacation rental regulation and the fireworks ban.

“How can you stand there and look at us with straight face and say you represent the people?” the unnamed man said as Anderson tried to answer. “This park, you bragged about taking care of this park. Look at the condition here, you’re right in the center of it.”

The man continued, “(There’s) still illegal commercial activity going on in here with the kayaks, with the boats, with the sailing, with the kite boards. How can you stand there and look us in the face with a straight face and give us all of this garbage that you’re throwing out now?”

Anderson responded by saying the visitor industry has been managed at the park, leading to a decrease in illegal commercial activities. He also said he supported a collaborative approach and finding common ground when it came to new regulations.

“What I always said as a Honolulu City Councilmember, I’m not looking for extremism. I’m not looking for a ‘wipe it all off the map, blow it all up’ approach to regulation, I’m looking at a common sense, even-keeled, middle-group approach that brings everyone together.”

Current and former Hawaii politicians put their support behind Anderson, including former Governor Neil Abercrombie. Also backing his run is former Council Chair Ann Kobayashi and current council chair Tommy Waters.

Anderson stepped down from the Honolulu City Council last September citing family reasons.

Also present at his campaign launch was respected Native Hawaiian scholar Kumu Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu.

“During his career as council member of Council District 3, Ikaika built a reputation as a public servant who is consensus builder, produces results, listens to people and isn’t afraid of tough issues,” she said. “There are tough issues Ikaika has faced and is confident and prepared to face in days ahead,” she said.

Anderson said as Lt. Gov., he would give the people of Hawaii solid leadership with clear decision making.

“Sometimes people don’t agree with the decisions I make, or that I have made, and I’m comfortable with that. But what I would never have and will never have as Lt. Gov. is the people of state be left hanging because I could not make a decision. That will never happen and cannot happen,” he said.

Also in the running for the position is former State Senator Jill Tokuda, who announced her bid for LG last week. She also ran for the position in 2018.

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