SHOPO endorses Hannemann
The State of Hawaii Organization of Police Officers on Friday endorsed Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann for governor.
SHOPO represents 2,800 police officers.
In a statement, union president Tenari Maafala said that Hannemann has put a strong emphasis on public safety and has pushed programs that have helped deter criminal activity.
"Being on the ground, police officers are the first to notice any improvements made in a community," Maafala said.
Maafala noted a recent FBI report that rated Honolulu as one of America's safest big cities.
Hannemann, who has yet to officially declare his candidacy, has also received endorsements from the ILWU Local 142 and Iron Workers Local 625.
Hannemann said he appreciated the support of police officers who "see the impact that I could have for the entire state, if elected to serve as governor."
Former U.S. Rep. Neil Abercrombie and Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona have announced campaigns to succeed outgoing Gov. Linda Lingle.
Aiona released this statement Friday afternoon:
"My service in support of our law enforcement community is second-to-none, and it is disappointing that the leadership of SHOPO chose to base its endorsement on politics rather than who will best represent Hawai`i's police officers.
"As a former city prosecutor, state judge, first administrative judge of the successful Hawai`i Drug Court Program, and now as lieutenant governor, public safety has always been my highest priority.
"I am confident that Hawai`i's law enforcement families will recognize that I have been on their side throughout my professional career, and they will turn out to support me on Election Day."