Days before the election, Maui County mayoral candidates make final plea to voters

The candidates were out sign waving and were planning for a busy weekend.
Published: Nov. 4, 2022 at 6:54 PM HST
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WAILUKU (HawaiiNewsNow) - In the final four days before the election, Maui County mayoral candidates are making one more push to entice voters.

“We got the train moving. We got the momentum, so why change leadership when you got the momentum moving in the right direction,” said incumbent Michael Victorino.

Victorino has been the mayor of Maui County since January of 2019. Before that, he served as a councilmember from 2006 to 2017.

His challenger is former Prosecuting Attorney and retired Judge Richard Bissen.

“I have fresh ideas. I have leadership background and skills. I haven’t been in office for 14 years,” Bissen said.

Newcomer Bissen beat out Victorino in the primary election, securing about 13,498 votes. But it was close, with Victorino garnering nearly 11,794 votes. It is expected to be a tight race again for the general election.

“The current administration has had 14 years to try to figure out or try to do. It hasn’t happened yet. People I think are frustrated,” Bissen said.

“The difference is I collaborate, I work well with people, I have built many great relationships throughout this county,” said Victorino.

According to the County Clerk’s Office, 98,286 ballots were mailed out to Maui County voters as of Monday and only 17,463 ballots had been received back. That is less than 18%.

Both candidates say they are confident heading into Tuesday.

“I think we’ve done a good job and I’m expecting good news on November 8,” Victorino said.

“I feel hopeful. I feel grateful mostly for all the volunteers and helpers and believers,” said Bissen. “We’re gonna just try to finish strong and leave it in the hands of the voters.”

Ballots are due by 7 p.m. on Tuesday.