Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle (photo: madmarv00)

A week or so ago I wrote a diary in response to Adam Nagourney’s puff piece in the NYT cautioning that Dems could lose a Senate seat in Hawaii, with the retirement of Democrat Daniel Akaka.

As frequently happens, those who commented on that diary brought insight and additional information — far beyond what I’d initially included.  One commenter, “Paiagirl,” was especially good. Unfortunately her remarks occurred late in the thread, after the diary was moved off the front page.  In order to bring her comments the attention they deserve, I’m cutting & pasting here. [Paia is a funky town on Maui, not too far from where I live, but I don't know Paiagirl.]

On Linda Lingle, retired governor and likely Republican nominee for Akaka’s seat:

Linda Lingle also is a very vindictive woman. She got mad at Maui County because after having her as mayor, a majority in our county voted for her opponent. She took it out on us.

She also invested $3 billion in some junk bonds, leaving our subsequent Gov Abercrombie unable to access the money during this economic downturn. She left the accounts in shambles as though no one was DOING the finances for the state.

And more on Lingle:

She doesn’t keep her word in negotiations. We’ve gone in, negotiated, come to an agreement, given up substantial concessions, and 2 hours later Lingle completely abrogates the agreement.

Unfortunately, she is a pretty smart cookie and good at presenting herself publicly, which makes her extremely dangerous because behind that public face is a voraciously ambitious woman who will do anything to advance her career and has absolutely no ethics.

In November, this year’s voters will be reminded about one of Lingle’s “achievements, ”  the “Superferry” .  [As a favor to her business friends, Lingle rammed through an inter-island "Superferry," without environmental impact studies. The project later cratered, resulting in  a massive loss of money]:

[In conjunction with the Superferry] she spent $40million on Chinese-made barges in an attempt to circumvent environmental law. The effect of her ignoring environmental law was that the Superferry took over our interisland freight dock and they tore down the shed that kept our partial loads out of the rain. Virtually EVERYTHING comes into Maui via interisland barge. (food goods, building materials, etc) Those tax-payer funded barges are still taking up space at our docks – where berths are at a premium since we are constrained on expanding our docs.

As an ironic note, yesterday’s paper featured a story about new proposals to re-establish a Superferry, done right this time, I assume. I’ll look forward to Paiagirl’s comments on this matter.

As to the current crop of Hawaii Democrats:  Mazie Hirono, our present Congresswoman, is running in the Democratic primary for Akaka’s seat. Our senior Senator, Daniel Inouye, basically runs the state.

Mazie Hirono is a really progressive candidate. She’s Buddhist, anti-war, consistently votes progressively. Mazie is da bomb!

Inouye wields a lot of behind the scenes power as far as determining who gets National DCCC money and so on. But at the state level, he can’t do much because our State democratic party has no money and is filled with progressives who aren’t going to go for someone just because Inouye picks them.

Mazie’s just one of those people, who everyone likes – progressives, unions, even Inouye. (Here in Hawaii, the ILWU HATES progressives, so this is 2 very different constituencies)

But true dat, that Inouye will support ABC (anyone but case) Case was so arrogant as to run against a well-loved incumbent, Akaka. In fact, I’ve seen Inouye support a REPUBLICAN county councilmember because he still held a grudge against the guy running against the Republican. And Inouye managed not to get kicked out of the Democratic pary even though we have a rule against endorsing people from other parties.

Anyway that’s the latest from this end of the country.  Thank you, Paiagirl, for all the info you provided.

Happy 2012, everyone.