Cayetano to sue pro-rail group - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Cayetano to sue pro-rail group

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An anti-Cayetano ad An anti-Cayetano ad
Ben Cayetano Ben Cayetano
John Hart John Hart


Honolulu mayoral candidate Ben Cayetano says he will sue the pro-rail Pacific Resource Partnership for defamation.

Cayetano has hired a local law firm with his own money and plans to file the lawsuit as early as next week.

He said PRP is spending as much as $2 million dollars in attack ads, knowing they are false.

"That's the frustrating part of it," Cayetano said. "They know it's not true and yet they continue to do it because they want to win this election and make sure I don't do it."

Cayetano, who opposes rail, says the lawsuit aims to clear his record and find out who's financing PRP's ads.

Most of PRP's money comes from the local Carpenter's Union ... but PRP is not required to disclose its other donors.

"I think they have a lot of things to hide themselves," Cayetano said.

"This has been a terrible campaign because what they have done by spending ... I think approaching $2 million now ... just attacking and not discussing the issues."

PRP had no immediate comment.

Political analysts say Cayetano needed to respond quickly to the latest ads and that a lawsuit is an effective way of doing that.

"I think these ads are very hard hitting," said HPU Professor John Hart.

"They're saying he's lying, they're saying you can't trust him and at some point he has to respond."

The race between Cayetano and pro-rail candidate Kirk Caldwell for is expected to be very close. But a hearing on Cayetano's lawsuit won't be scheduled until well after the Nov. 6th election.