HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - We have our first results back from the Hawaii News Now/Star Advertiser election poll.
Hundreds of registered voters were asked if the election were held for Governor today, who would you vote for in the Democratic primary? 47% said incumbent Neil Abercrombie while 38% chose State Senator David Ige. 14% were undecided with a 4% margin of error.
Senator Ige told Hawaii News Now, "I'm very encouraged by the early results. You know there are many still undecided, and most importantly, it's a really close race."
Abercrombie's Campaign Manager said, "they're pleased with the Governor's strong lead." The Governor's camp touts a $850 million budget surplus and rebound from recession, adding "It took strength and leadership to make the tough choices that led to this positive turning point for Hawaii."
University of Hawaii Assistant Political Science Professor Colin Moore said of the results, "He's still beating David Ige in the primary. He shouldn't be overly concerned. There's still a lot of time left."
However the poll shows Republican Duke Aiona leads Neil Abercrombie in a head-to-head matchup 48 to 40 percent.
"I'm a little shocked, but very encouraged by these numbers" said Aiona. "I think what this is is confirmation that the people of Hawaii are just not happy with the way things are right now."
45% polled have an unfavorable opinion of Neil Abercrombie. 45% have a favorable view. In this race Duke Aiona has the highest approval rating at 58%. David Ige polled 30% favorable, but 38% have never heard of him.
Ige said of the results, "My opponent (Neil Abercrombie) is well known and he can't beat Aiona as a candidate. I still have much room to grow." Colin Moore added, The way to gain recognition is to get your name out there and the way to do that is to fund raise to allow you to take out advertisements."
Aiona enjoys a 51 to 34% edge over David Ige.
A wildcard is Mufi Hannemann. The poll asked if Hannemann runs for Governor as Independent, are you likely to consider voting for him? 39% answered yes, 57% said no. Hannemann sees the results as a viable indication he could win a three-way race.
Hannemann responded to the poll by phone, saying "the fact that 4 out of 10 would pull a ballot for me in a 3 way race, we get 40 percent of the vote."
However with six months to go until the primary, everyone said it's too early to read into these results.
Hawaii Poll Tables: Click for a breakdown of the numbers - http://hine.ws/2014hipoll1