This is a companion piece to my recent one, Republican Majorities Should Elect Republicans. In 2009, Scott Brown shocked the political world when he won the US Senate seat in Massachusetts. This year he is leading by 5 points against Democrat Elizabeth Warren in his reelection bid. Republican nominee Linda McMahon is leading by 3 points against Democrat Chris Murphy in neighboring Connecticut for the open senate seat currently occupied by Democrat Joe Lieberman.
A Republican in Oxford, Mississippi can run as a devout Christian who strongly opposes homosexuality and abortion and win the election, but this is not the way for a Republican in Redmond, Washington, Hilo, Hawaii, or Buffalo, New York to win an election. We need Republicans to win everywhere that they can win, and let’s rejoice with their votes to cut spending and cut regulations instead of whining about how they are not always a reliable vote against homosexuality and abortion. Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.
Let’s look at three US House seats that can switch from Democrat to Republican in 2012. Many political pundits and reporters are paying little attention to these contests.
Hawaii 2nd Congressional District
The 2nd Congressional District includes all of the Windward, North Shore, Central, and Leeward regions of Oahu. It also includes the entire state outside of Oahu. This includes the areas located in the counties of Kauai (which includes the islands of Kauai, Niihau, Lehua, and Kaula), Maui (which consists of the islands of Maui, Kahoolawe, Lanai, Molokai except for a portion of Molokai that comprises Kalawao County, and Molokini) and Hawaii coextensive with the Island of Hawaii. The most populous city entirely within the district is Hilo. The Republican nominee is David Kawika Crowley
David Kawika Crowley is also known as the “9/11 Guy” waving his flag every September 11th. He’s spent years giving drivers on Kamehameha Highway the thumbs up. Now he’s hoping voters give it back on election night. He always has a cigar and for the past six years he’s been a lobbyist fighting for smokers and bar owners trying to get the smoking ban snuffed.
Tulsi Gabbard was the underdog in the Democrats primary but beat former Honolulu Mayor and gubernatorial candidate Mufi Hannemann in a landslide.
Crowley pulled off his own upset to beat fellow Republican Matt DeGeronimo who was a valedictorian, has a nuclear engineering degree and is an Iraq War veteran. The following are quotes from Kawiki Crowley that includes some salty language.
Many think I’m part Hawaiian, but I have not a drop of Hawaiian blood. I am English, Irish, Scotch, and Cherokee. I am indeed proud of my heritage. It is my Cherokee blood, from the survivors of the dreadful Trail of Tears, that allows me to relate and empathize with the Hawaiian people and their desire to resurrect their nation. I am indeed humbled to have been one of the writers of the classic sovereignty song, “Hawaii 78” made popular by Bro. IZ and the Makaha Sons back in the seventies. To this day over 35 years later it touches millions around the world.
My main passion is this. The American people are sick and tired of big fat ass government getting into every single part of our affairs, our personal affairs, our business affairs. The federal government has no business telling a bar owner that he cannot allow smoking in his bar. You want to vote for somebody who is not bought and paid for by anybody, I’m your conservative alternative to big fat ass government. That’s it. Simple.
Hey I don’t care if you’re in love with a frog. That don’t bother me nothing. You want to sleep with another man fine. You want to kiss a man and you’re a man, I couldn’t give a rip. But don’t redefine the word marriage. Leave the sanctity of marriage between a man and a woman. End of story.
About 6 months ago had this lady, she was running from congress her name was, what was her name, Oh Tulsi Gabbard. And look what happened. She was a nobody and look what she pulled off. Now I’m the David of the Goliath, but she’s not a Goliath, she’s a gorgeous Goliath you know what I mean, she’s the one with the money, I’m the one with the determination.
I must add this…If I am elected,I will be donating 1/4 of my salary as a Congressman to the Wounded Warriors Project, in hopes that other lawmakers in Washington will do the same. Our wounded warriors need every bit of our support. We live because they gave.
New York 27th congressional District
It includes all of Chautauqua County and the southern part of Erie County. The district contains much of the city of Buffalo and most of its eastern and southern suburbs as well as the city of Jamestown. It has been represented by Democrat Kathy Hochul since 2011. The Republican nominee is Chris Collins. The following information is from his website.
In 2007, Chris Collins was elected Erie County Executive despite a voter enrollment of almost two Democrats for every one Republican. He took over the largest county in Upstate New York with a $1.2 billion budget and 5,000+ employees that was effectively bankrupt. It had a state imposed control board, no cash surplus, runaway debt, and many roads, bridges, parks and beaches were closed. By running Erie County like a business and implementing Lean Six Sigma, Collins achieved staggering results. In 4 years, Erie County was transformed from a county in the worst financial shape of any county in New York, to one with these results:
- Reduced overall debt by over $120 million
- Created a cash surplus in excess of $100 million
- Reduced county employment by over 1,200 employees (22%) saving $72 million per year
- Reopened every bridge, road, park and beach that was closed and even rebuilt the historic toboggan runs
- One of the few large counties to fully pay state imposed pension costs without borrowing
- Got rid of the State imposed fiscal control authority in 18 months and got approval for a 4 year plan (2012-2015)that would further reduce county debt by another $100 million
Washington’s 1st Congressional District
It encompasses part of Northwest Seattle and largely suburban areas north and east of Seattle including Shoreline, Edmonds, Lynnwood, Mountlake Terrace, Bothell, Kirkland and Redmond as well as Bainbridge Island and part of the Kitsap Peninsula. Until he stepped down on March 20, 2012, it was represented by Democrat Jay Inslee from Bainbridge Island. Inslee resigned to focus on his run for Governor of the state; the seat will remain vacant until a special election that will coincide with the November 2012 general election. The Republican nominee is John Koster. The following information is from his website.
As a businessman and public servant, John Koster has the right experience to represent us in Congress. John was a three term state representative in Olympia, where he earned a reputation as a fiscal watchdog. During his time in the legislature, John was responsible for organizing the Conservative Caucus where he worked with other legislators to lower taxes and cut spending.
After running for Congress in 2000 and narrowly losing to Rick Larsen, John continued his public service after getting elected to the Snohomish County Council. As a county councilman, John has not only been a leader on the county-level, he has been chosen by his peers to serve on the board of directors of the National and State Associations of Counties.
It is John’s love of family that prompted John to run for Congress. John is concerned that the American Dream that he was able to live will not be available for future generations. The debt that Congress is running up is out of control, and we are rapidly destroying the free enterprise system that made America’s economy the most productive in the world.