Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie yesterday declared that he lost this month’s reelection primary because he had called a special legislative session on same-sex marriage.
Republicans are allowed to vote for Democrats in Hawaii’s open primary, and Abercrombie said they chose to vote against him because of his support for gay marriage and because they think his party rival, state Sen. David Ige, is an easier target to beat in the general election. “Republicans crossed over en masse to vote in the Democratic primary, and then the religious factor came in,” Abercrombie said. “Doctrinally I was outside the circle and paid for it.” He argued that voters were urged to choose his opponent by their religious leaders. Abercrombie, who spoke to reporters in his office, lost to Ige by a stunning 2-1 margin, the first time a Democratic governor has been unseated in a Hawaii primary. But Abercrombie said losing was worth it to pass a law legalizing gay marriage. “There’s no way I could live with myself if I thought I was diminishing another human being’s ability to reach their full capacity,” Abercrombie said.
Those who watched night after night of those public comments during the Hawaii House committee hearings will remember them as the ugliest we’ve ever seen. And that is really saying something.