The Hawaii Democrats’ GLBT Caucus has made a slightly unusual endorsement in the U.S. Senate race. Rather than endorse one candidate, they have endorsed both Ed Case and Mazie Hirono, one of whom will beat the other in the August primary election. Caucus Chair Jo-Ann Adams explained that on LGBT issues, either would be ideal to defeat former Republican Linda Lingle for the seat because of her “unwarranted cruelty” to the LGBT community:
ADAMS: There are significant differences between the candidates, and members of other Caucuses have urged the Caucus to support only one candidate, because of these differences that are the purview of other caucuses. However, on our issues they both have been consistently supportive for several decades.
Linda Lingle at her best did nothing for the LGBT community. At her worst, she invited members of the LGBT Community to have assigned front-row seats at the press conference when she announced her veto of the civil unions bill. Her unwarranted cruelty will not soon be forgotten.
As of January 1, 2012, civil unions are now the law in Hawaii, but not thanks to Lingle. Her 2009 veto led the ACLU and Lambda Legal to sue the state for equal treatment for same-sex couples. They withdrew the case last year after Lingle’s successor, Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D), signed civil unions into law.