Energized Lingle reaps first rewards of victory
By Dan Nakaso
Advertiser Staff Writer
Linda Lingle's first day after being elected Hawai'i's first female governor and the first Republican in 40 years began on less than four hours of sleep, and included a congratulatory call from President Bush.
Lingle left the celebration at her Ala Moana headquarters around 3 a.m. The work day began at 7 a.m. without her usual pool swim. Sometime after 10:30 a.m., Lingle got a telephone call from Bush that lasted seven to 10 minutes.
They talked about the political races around the country and the fact that a female Republican had won in Hawai'i, said her spokesman, Lenny Klompus.
"They talked about her agenda for change and how supportive Washington will be," he said.
Lingle thanked her staff and met with top campaign officials to begin the transition of power from Democratic to Republican administrations. Bob Awana, Lingle's campaign manager and interim head of the transition team, got a call from a member of Gov. Ben Cayetano's administration to begin working out the details.
There were no congratulatory calls from Lt. Gov. Mazie Hirono, whom Lingle beat in the governor's race, Klompus said.
As volunteers swept up remains of the party from the night before and staff members sagged with fatigue, Lingle remained energized, Klompus said.
"She's excited, really looking forward to doing all the things she wants to do. She really believes this is a new day."
Reach Dan Nakaso at email@example.com or 525-8085.