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Hawaii Voters Hold Primary, Elect Interim Representative

September 23, 1990

HONOLULU (AP) _ Former Rep. Patsy Mink was a two-time winner in Hawaii, winning a special election to take back her U.S. House seat temporarily and prevailing in the Democratic primary in her bid for a full 2-year term.

Appointed Democratic Sen. Daniel Akaka and Republican Rep. Patricia Saiki each won easily in their primary bids to fill the unexpired term of the late Sen. Spark Matsunaga, who died of cancer in April.

Gov. John Waihee, seeking his second four-year term, coasted past three little-known opponents in the Democratic gubernatorial primary in Saturday’s election. He’ll face Republican state Rep. Fred Hemmings, a businessman and former world champion surfer, who beat five others in the GOP primary.

Mink beat seven other candidates in a winner-take-all special election to fill the three months remaining in Akaka’s term. Akaka resigned the 2nd District House seat in May to succeed Matsunaga.

Mink edged business executive Mufi Hannemann in the special election, and also beat Hannemann in the Democratic primary. She will face Republican Andrew Poepoe in the Nov. 6 general election.

Mink, 62, an attorney, served in the House from 1965-77 and was a member of the Honolulu City Council from 1982-86. She was a territorial and state legislator from 1956-64.

With 100 percent of the vote counted in the special election, Mink had 51,840 votes to Hannemann’s 50,158, giving her a 37 percent to 36 percent edge.

In the Democratic primary, with 100 percent of the ballots counted, Mink had 47,998 votes to 44,536 for Hannemann, 20,845 for state Sen. Ron Menor and 6,522 for state Sen. Mike Crozier.

Poepoe won in a three-way GOP primary. With 100 percent of the vote counted, Poepoe received 13,363 votes to 4,354 for Stanley Monsef and 892 for Jose Pilos.

Matsunaga’s son, Honolulu attorney Matthew Matsunaga, came in third in the Democratic primary for the 1st District House seat.

With 100 percent of the vote counted, Honolulu City Councilman Neil Abercrombie, who won a special election in 1986 and served three months in Congress, won with 43,480 votes; state Sen. Norman Mizuguchi had 30,942, and Matsunaga got 21,128.

State Rep. Michael Liu won a narrow 11,154 to 9,150 victory over former Marine officer Frank Hutchinson in a three-way 1st District GOP race.

Akaka had 91 percent of the vote, 180,235, against one Democratic opponent, Paul Snider, who got 18,427.

Saiki, after two terms representing the 1st District, had 39,681 votes, or 86 percent of the total, in the four-way Republican primary. Her closest competitor was former legislator Richard Sutton, who got 2,433 votes.

In the gubernatorial race, incumbent Waihee had 179,383 votes, or 88 percent of the total.

On the Republican side, Hemmings pulled in 38,827 votes, or 90 percent of the total.

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