Kawika Crowley

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Kawika Crowley
Personal details
Born 1952 (age 65–66)
Japan
Political party Republican
Website www.kawika4congress.com

David "Kawika" Crowley, born in 1952, was the Hawaii Republican nominee for the United States House of Representatives in 2nd congressional district in the November 2012 election. A colorful and offbeat candidate, he achieved notability as the "homeless handyman" running for Congress. He was the first homeless person in Hawaii — and perhaps any state — to be nominated for Congress on a major party ticket.[1][2] In 2014, Crowley again won the Republican primary race for the 2nd Congressional district in a contested race.

Early years[edit]

By some accounts Crowley was born in Japan as the son of missionaries; by other accounts he was born in North Carolina and moved to Japan with his parents when he was six months old.[3] He grew up speaking and reading Japanese.[1] When he was in 8th grade, he moved to Hilo, Hawaii and learned for the first time to read English.[2] Crowley spent his teenage years and much of his young adulthood in Hilo.[4] He graduated from Hilo High School in 1969.[5] He describes himself as a "college dropout with a degree in common sense."[3]

Political life[edit]

Crowley ran for Mayor of the Big Island of Hawaii in 1991. In 2012, Crowley defeated Matthew DiGeronimo to win the Republican nomination for Hawaii's 2nd Congressional district race. Crowley achieved 45% of the vote to his opponent's 29%.[6] In the general election, Crowley was easily beaten by Tulsi Gabbard, who became the first Hindu Member of Congress.[7]

For six years, Crowley represented interests of the Hawaii Bar Owners Association, doing lobbyist work at the Hawaii State House. He is known as "the smoking guy" for his lobbying to repeal Hawaii's ban on indoor smoking in stand alone bars, and is never seen without a cigar.[1] He is opposed to the Honolulu Rail Project and to same-sex marriage.[8] He is a supporter of the Hawaiian sovereignty movement, although he has no Hawaiian ancestry.[3]

Electoral history[edit]

2012 U.S. House of Representatives Hawaii District 2 Republican primary[6]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Kawika Crowley 9,056 45.0
Republican Matt DiGeronimo 5,843 29.0
Blank Votes 5,232 26.0
Over Votes 10 0.0
Total votes 20,141 100
2012 U.S. House of Representatives Hawaii District 2[9]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Tulsi Gabbard 168,503 76.8
Republican Kawika Crowley 40,707 18.6
Blank Votes 9,952 4.5
Over Votes 121 0.1
Total votes 219,283 100
2014 U.S. House of Representatives Hawaii District 2 Republican primary[10]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Kawika Crowley 9,094 42.71
Republican Marissa D. Capelouto 6,926 32.53
Blank votes 5,255 24.68
Over votes 15 0.07
Total votes 21,290 100
2014 U.S. House of Representatives Hawaii District 2[11]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Tulsi Gabbard (Incumbent) 142,010 78.7%
Republican Kawika Crowley 33,630 18.6%
Libertarian Joe Kent 4,693 2.6%
Total votes 180,333 100

Personal life[edit]

Divorced with three children, Crowley lived for a number of years as a single parent.[2] He is a handyman and painter who lives out of his car. He earns about $15,000 a year, putting him in the ranks of the "working homeless".[1]

He claims to be a co-writer of the song Hawaiʻi '78[12] and to have a history in the Hawaiian Music industry.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Kawika Crowley, Homeless Handyman, Runs For Congress In Hawaii". Huffington Post. September 4, 2012. Retrieved September 20, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c "Handyman hopes to go from homeless to Congress". KLTV. September 10, 2012. Retrieved September 20, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c Blair, Chad (August 27, 2012). "Meet Kawika Crowley, Candidate for Congress". Honolulu Civil Beat. Retrieved 20 September 2012. 
  4. ^ Kawika Crowley Biography - Project Vote Smart
  5. ^ Hupp, Ken (August 30, 2012). "Congressional hopeful Crowley stumps in Hilo". KPUA-AM. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 20 September 2012. 
  6. ^ a b "PRIMARY ELECTION 2012 – State of Hawaii – Statewide" (PDF). State Of Hawaii Office of Elections. Retrieved September 29, 2012. 
  7. ^ Gabbard easily beats Crowley for US House seat, AP
  8. ^ Kawika Crowley: A GOP underdog | West Hawaii Today, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii
  9. ^ "GENERAL ELECTION 2012 – State of Hawaii – Statewide" (PDF). State Of Hawaii Office of Elections. Retrieved November 20, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Primary Election 2014 – State of Hawaii – Statewide" (PDF). Hawaii Office of Elections. Retrieved October 24, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Hawaii General Election 2014" (PDF). Hawaii Office of Elections. November 4, 2014. Retrieved December 18, 2014. 
  12. ^ Crowley, David Kawika. "The true story of Hawaii 78". hawaiiseventyeight.com. Retrieved 20 September 2012. 
  13. ^ Former Hilo resident Kawika Crowley takes his U.S. House campaign to the Big Island | West Hawaii Today, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii