Very interesting. A major reason—probably the major reason—that Hawaii Democrats have been reluctant to float any kind of primary challenge to Rep. Tulsi Gabbard so far is the fact that she’s long been very popular. That may now be changing. According to a new poll for Honolulu Civil Beat conducted by Merriman River Group, Gabbard’s statewide favorability rating dropped from 64-19 two years ago to 50-29 today. Gabbard fares better in her home district, but she’s still taken a bit of a hit there, too, falling from 67-17 to 58-25.?
?What matters most, though, is where Gabbard’s support is—and isn’t—coming from. Statewide, Gabbard earns positive marks from just 49 percent of Democrats, which is low given that we’re talking about members of Gabbard’s own party, while she gets a thumbs up from 48 percent of Republicans, a shockingly high score … ordinarily, at least. To put this in context, Hawaii’s other member of the House, Democrat Colleen Hanabusa, has a similar 48-27 statewide favorability rating, but with 65 percent of Democrats viewing her positively and just 24 percent of Republicans doing so. That’s a much more conventional split.
But Gabbard is anything but conventional. She’s received tremendous scorn for cozying up to murderous Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, and until Donald Trump launched a few missiles Assad’s way, she’d refused to publicly criticize the Great Orange Terror. In fact, she was one of the only Democrats to meet with him (at Trump Tower, of course) right after the election.
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