IWILEI (KHNL) - Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann received just over 80,000 votes, missing the magic mark. Challengers Ann Kobayashi garnered just over 49,000, and Panos Prevedouros got 28,000 votes.
Four years ago, Hannemann battled a challenger in the primary election, then went on to win the job as the head of Honolulu. But this time, challengers keep him from winning reelection during the primary.
The supporters were in place and the party started early at Hannemann's headquarters. After the first printout, the crowd and campaign were confident there would be enough votes to keep Hannemann at Honolulu Hale. But those numbers dropped below the needed-vote total for the second printout and stayed that way as the election wound down. Hannemann said, "We came oh so close to getting that 50 percent plus one."
But the lower total just fired up Hannemann and the crowd of supporters. "2004, we went all the way in the general election and we won. And we are going to do the same this election," he promised.
After the final printout, Hannemann talked strategy over the upcoming weeks until the general election and likes going one-on-one against only one challenger. "Now we'll focus on the serious issues, who has the experience, who has been on the hot seat before. That's what I like about it; it will be a comparison side by side."
Hannemann got over 80,000 votes in the primary, missing the needed mark by less than a thousand votes. He feels low voter turnout was a factor that forced the runoff. "Primary election, you don't get as many people to vote, but that's fine, we are just delaying the inevitable and we'll make it count."
As the night ended, the general election campaign begins for Hannemann and his supporters. "Now we go onto the general. I can't wait. We will return to city hall."