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From Race to EthnicityInterpreting Japanese American Experiences in Hawaii$
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Jonathan Y. Okamura

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780824839505

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824839505.001.0001

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Power and Ethnicity

Power and Ethnicity


(p.134) Chapter 6 Power and Ethnicity
From Race to Ethnicity

Jonathan Y. Okamura

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter examines how Japanese Americans have been able to maintain their power in electoral politics after George Ariyoshi left the governor's office in 1986, despite their declining proportion of Hawaiʻi's population. It first discusses Japanese American political representation in various arenas, including the office of the governor, Hawaiʻi's congressional delegation, and the state legislature. It then considers the nature of the “Japanese vote” and the results of the 2012 elections, especially for local Japanese candidates, along with the significance of ethnicity in electoral politics, particularly in voting by different ethnic groups and in campaigning by Japanese American and non-Japanese candidates to attract local Japanese voters. The chapter concludes by highlighting the most significant factors that contribute to maintaining Japanese American political power in Hawaiʻi.

Keywords:   elections, Japanese Americans, electoral politics, Hawaiʻi, state legislature, Japanese vote, ethnicity, voting, ethnic groups, political power

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