American Samoa gubernatorial election, 2012

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American Samoa Gubernatorial Election, 2012
American Samoa
2008 ←
November 6, 2012 (2012-11-06)
→ 2016

  Lolo Moliga by James Kneubuhl.jpg Ipulasi Aitofele Sunias speaking.jpg
Nominee Lolo Letalu Matalasi Moliga Faoa Aitofele Sunia
Party Independent Democratic
Running mate Lemanu Peleti Mauga Taufete'e John Faumuina, Jr.
Popular vote 6,645 5,908
Percentage 52.9% 47.1%

Governor before election

Togiola Tulafono
Democratic

Elected Governor

Lolo Letalu Matalasi Moliga
Independent

The 2012 American Samoa gubernatorial election took place on November 6, 2012, for the open gubernatorial seat of American Samoa. The election coincides with the larger United States presidential elections, United States general elections and the American Samoa general election. Since no candidate received a majority of the vote on November 6, a runoff election was held on Tuesday, November 20, 2012, which was won by Independent candidate Lolo Letalu Matalasi Moliga.

Six candidates sought election as the next Governor of American Samoa in 2012.[1] Governor Togiola Tulafono was term-limited and could not seek a third consecutive term.[1]

Election background[edit]

Outgoing Gov. Tulafono is term-limited.

The incumbent, Governor Togiola Tulafono, who has held office since 2003, is term-limited and could not seek re-election.[1] Tulafono, who took office after the death of former Governor Tauese Sunia, was elected to his first four-year term in 2004 and re-elected in the 2008 gubernatorial election.[2]

All elections and candidates in American Samoa are nonpartisan, though Faoa Aitofele Sunia is affiliated with the Democrat Party. Slightly less than 17,000 American Samoans were eligible to vote in the 2012 election.[3]

Gubernatorial candidates[edit]

Six candidates are vying to become the next Governor of American Samoa.[1]

  • Timothy Jones, engineer
    • Running mate: Tuika Tuika, government official and candidate for Governor in 2008.[6][7]

Withdrew[edit]

Controversy[edit]

The gubernatorial ticket of Save Liuato Tuitele and Sandra King Young filed a petition in September 2012 against four other campaigns questioning their eligibility to run in the election.[17] Tuitele and Young argued that the other four candidates had not resigned from their government jobs before beginning their political campaigns, as required by law.[17] The four candidates challenged by the Tuitele campaign were gubernatorial candidates Lolo Letalu Matalasi Moliga and Salu Hunkin-Finau, as well as Lt. Governor candidates Taufete'e Faumuina Jr. and Le'i Sonny Thompson.[19]

The case was heard by the High Court of American Samoa,[17] which turned down the petition allowing all candidates to remain in the election.[20]

Endorsements[edit]

Outgoing Governor Togiola Tulafono endorsed his Lieutenant Governor, Faoa Aitofele Sunia, for Governor in the six-way election.[21]

Election results[edit]

Election results, Governor of American Samoa, November 6, 2012
Party Candidate Votes %
Independent Lolo Letalu Matalasi Moliga 4,372 33.5%
Democratic Faoa Aitofele Sunia 4,315 33.1%
Republican Afoa Moega Lutu 2,521 19.3%
Independent Salu Hunkin-Finau 893 6.8%
Independent Save Liuato Tuitele 763 5.8%
Independent Timothy Jones 189 1.4%
Totals 13,053 100%

Due to no candidate receiving more than 50% of the vote a runoff election was held.

Runoff election results, Governor of American Samoa, November 20, 2012
Party Candidate Votes %
Independent Lolo Letalu Matalasi Moliga 6,645 52.9%
Democratic Faoa Aitofele Sunia 5,908 47.1%
Totals 12,553 100%

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "6 candidates vie to be American Samoa's governor". Associated Press (Real Clear Politics). 2012-09-04. Retrieved 2012-11-01. 
  2. ^ "2012 Gubernatorial Elections". National Governors Association. Retrieved 2012-11-02. 
  3. ^ "American Samoa officials ready for next week’s election". Radio New Zealand International. 2012-10-30. Retrieved 2012-11-01. 
  4. ^ Sagapolutele, Fili (2012-01-23). "Female Educator Enters Race For American Samoa Governor". Samoa News (East-West Center). Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  5. ^ Montgemery, Nancy (2012-09-02). "After 37 years in uniform, Army veteran turns eye to politics". Stars and Stripes. Retrieved 2012-09-19. 
  6. ^ Feagaimaalii-Luamanu, Joyetter (2012-09-04). "Who's on the ballot?". Talanei. Retrieved 2012-11-01. 
  7. ^ "Territorial elections will be the main event of 2012". Talanei. 2012-01-03. Retrieved 2012-02-28. 
  8. ^ Feagaimaalii-Luamanu, Joyetter (2012-02-22). "Afoa and Le'i Officially Enter 2012 Gubernatorial Race". Samoa News. Retrieved 2012-11-01. 
  9. ^ Sagapolutele, Fili (2011-10-19). "Lolo and Lemanu declare their candidacy for governor and lt. governor in the 2012 general election". Samoa News. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  10. ^ "Lolo Letalu Moliga & Lemanu Peleti Mauga are in gubernatorial race". Talanei. 2011-10-19. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  11. ^ "Former President of American Samoa Senate enters gubernatorial race". Radio New Zealand International. 2011-10-20. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  12. ^ "Lt. Gov. Faoa Aitofele Sunia and Taufete'e John Faumuina officially announce their candidacy". Samoa News. 2011-11-22. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  13. ^ "American Samoa’s Lt Governor vies top job in next year’s election". Radio New Zealand International. 2011-10-22. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  14. ^ "Save picks woman as American Samoa co-candidate". Radio New Zealand International. 2012-01-23. Retrieved 2012-09-19. 
  15. ^ "Save Liuato Tuitele & Tofoitaufa Sandra King-Young in 2012 race". Talanei. 2012-01-23. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  16. ^ Deposa, Moneth (2011-08-24). "CUC to lose its executive director, Malae announces election bid for A. Samoa governor". Saipan Tribune. Retrieved 2011-08-24. 
  17. ^ a b c d "American Samoa governor candidate withdraws from race". Radio New Zealand International. 2011-10-11. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  18. ^ "Utu Abe Malae Withdraws from Governor's Race". Talanei. 2011-10-11. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  19. ^ "Four candidates in American Samoa’s gubernatorial race challenged". Radio New Zealand International. 2012-01-23. Retrieved 2012-11-04. 
  20. ^ Sagapolutele, Fili (2012-09-21). "Team Save-Sandra hope in future elections law obeyed". Samoa News. Retrieved 2012-11-03. 
  21. ^ Sagapolutele, Fili (2012-11-01). "Governor endorses Faoa — Save & Sandra announce policy challenges; Togiola Endorses Team Faoa And Taufetee During Final Campaign Event". Samoa News. Retrieved 2012-11-03. 

External links[edit]