An Open Case

While we all wondered who might finally step forward as a gubernatorial challenger for the Democrats as the clock ticks, a resounding alarm clock went off last week when centrist democrat Ed Case stepped up to challenge respected incumbent Daniel Akaka for a U.S. Senate seat this fall. While it's not necessarily the politically correct way things are done, upstart Case's logic is that now is the time for a transition to ensure Hawaii's place at the decision-making table in D.C. Voters have eight months to decide if this logic makes sense.

As for Case's soon-to-be vacant House seat in Washington, a number of aspiring candidates have come forward to announce their interest, which should make for some fascinating debates and qualification-pronouncements in the weeks and months ahead. A possibly mundane 2006 political season in Hawaii just got revved up quite a bit.

Oh, by the way, don't tell anyone, but we finally have an official opposition gubernatorial candidate. But you can't expect much interest in that race just yet, as Case's bid and the possibility of even more change in traditional Hawaii politics has everybody talking. Think about it…