Kirk Caldwell Launches Campaign for Honolulu Mayor

Kirk Caldwell, former city Managing Director, officially launched his campaign for Mayor Thursday morning.

Kirk Caldwell and Supporters

“I believe you deserve better than what you’re getting right now and I can do the job. It’s about rolling up our sleeves, it’s about digging in, it’s about knowing the details, it’s about working with people and solving problems. That’s how I approach issues. It’s about hands on details that make life better for all of you. That’s the kind of Mayor that I’m going to be,” Caldwell said in front of sign waving supporters.

“I believe in the bottom of my heart that you need someone who approaches this job seriously; the whole job not just the ceremonies, not just the ground br eakings, not just the world travel and not just to stand on one controversial issue,” said Caldwell.

Caldwell acknowledged that the Honolulu rail project is one of the many important issues this election saying “Rail is a huge issue and I’m pro mass transit. This system is not only about creating jobs but really redesigning our city around each of the transit stations. It’s about people living closer to work and spending more time at home with each other and cele br ating what’s best about life.”

Being a pro-rail supporter, Caldwell expressed concern about the way Peter Carlisle has handled the project saying “I think the way it has been handled is that its in more trouble because of a lack of focus, a lack of paying attention to detail, a lack of transparency and a lack of speaking to the people about the problems with rail and how you’re going to overcome them.”

With rail arguably the largest issue this election, Caldwell made a point to also mention the importance of smaller projects and paying close attention to the details. Using the recent overflowing trash problem at Diamond Head and Ala Wai as an example he said “the pictures say it all, the headlines say it all. We have trash not being picked up for a whole month in a major premier tourist destination in Hawaii , in one of the most beautiful places in the world. I can’t think of anything more basic, and more important for a mayor to do then to pick up the trash – and Mayor Carlisle cannot do this.”

Kirk Caldwell and Supporters

“I can promise you this – I’m going to be your hands on mayor; I’m going to approach every problem seriously, I’m going to listen to everyone I’m going to be transparent about the issues. And I’m going to put the people first when we solve the problems,” he added.

Caldwell also distributed a video message to his supporters on social media filmed at the Waipahu Sugar Mill in Waipahu – where Kirk was born and raised. Speaking about his experience growing up in a plantation town he said “This community helped shaped who I am. It was a great place to grow up as a kid.”

“It taught me the value of hard work, about tolerance, about listening to people, about caring for each other, about helping each other, about making decisions together and I carry those values with me to this day,” he added.

When asked by a reporter at Thursday morning’s press conference about his chances in the election, Caldwell said “I’m confident – I wouldn’t be doing this if I didn’t think I could win. I have a plan and I’m running to win.”

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