What will a Biden presidency mean for Hawaii? Elected leaders weigh in

What will a Biden presidency mean for Hawaii? Elected leaders weigh in
Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden speaks at a rally at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines, Iowa, Friday, Oct. 30, 2020. (Source: AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The race for the White House was officially called early Saturday morning, with news outlets projecting Democratic challenger Joe Biden as the winner of the election.

Now, elected leaders are weighing in on what a Joe Biden presidency could mean for the state.

Lt. Gov. Josh Green, a Democrat, said he believes a Biden administration will push through a “significant stimulus package” for states to help tackle the COVID-19 crisis.

Biden easily won Hawaii in the general election, securing nearly double the votes President Trump did.

With president-elect Joe Biden ahead in the Electoral College vote count, Green is among the Democrats who will be pleased to be working with a future President Biden. “I expect to see very different policy that will be safer, that will put the virus down more quickly,” Green said.

The emergency room doctor is still upset that President Trump never issued a national mask mandate. He and other leaders are hoping for a unified approach across states.

“It would be preferable if there was a national strategy so that we could contain the virus together and move forward together,” Gov. David Ige said, in an interview with Hawaii News Now on Tuesday.

But Republicans believe a Biden White House might not deliver for Hawaii.

“His style, let’s face it, he’s an imperfect instrument,” said state Rep. Bob McDermott.

“It’s not Joe Biden’s fault, it’s not Donald Trump’s fault that this virus came here. Nobody wanted it. Least of all, Trump.”

However, with Biden in the White House, McDermott thinks Hawaii’s all-democratic congressional delegation could get more help with big projects.

“I hope that means more money for the train, to offset our cost on that thing,” McDermott said.

From funding to public health, a Biden presidency could undoubtedly change things.

Green says most importantly, he hopes it will heal the country’s divisions.

“There’s still a lot of story ahead but look America. It was very close. Super-duper close, and it’s up to whomever serves as president to actually unite us this next go around,” he said.

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