Hawaii to hold special election for vacant Congressional seat

Hawaii will hold a special election to fill U.S. Rep. Mark Takai’s seat.

The Congressman died Wednesday morning after a battle with pancreatic cancer.

The U.S. Constitution stipulates that “any time there is a vacancy in the U.S. Rep seat, there has to be a special election to fill it. The governor cannot appoint a replacement,” explained chief election officer Scott Nago.

Therefore, a special election will be held in conjunction with the general election on Nov. 8.

The winner of the special election will serve in the position for the remainder of the term, which ends on Jan. 3, 2017 — essentially two months.

After that, the winner of the general election will take over. Ten people filed for the Congressional District 1 race by last month’s deadline.

It’s possible those candidates could also run in the special election.

“We are going to have to have the candidate filling period process, which will open up right after the primary election. They would just need to come down, file their nomination papers. No signatures are required but they need to pay their filing fee,” Nago said.

A formal proclamation will be issued later this month or in August.


HRS §17-2 United States representative. When a vacancy occurs in the representation of this State in the United States House of Representatives, the chief election officer shall issue a proclamation for an election to fill the vacancy. The proclamation shall be issued not later than on the sixtieth day prior to the election to fill the vacancy and shall contain the date, time, and places where the special election is to be held, the time within which nomination papers shall be filed, the time for transmitting to county clerks the notice designating the offices for which candidates are to be elected, the time for transmitting to county clerks lists of candidates to be voted for at the special election and such other matter as provided for in section 11-91 and which are not inconsistent with this section. The special election shall be conducted and the results ascertained so far as practicable, in accordance with this title. [L 1970, c 26, pt of §2; am L 1973, c 217, §7(b); am L 1974, c 34, §4(a); gen ch 1985; am L 1986, c 305, §6]

“When vacancies happen in the Representation from any State, the Executive Authority thereof shall issue Writs of Election to fill such Vacancies.” — U.S. Constitution, Article I, section 2, clause 4

 

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