Case sets his sights on Akaka in 2012
Though a loser just last year, he already is seeking money
Former U.S. Rep. Ed Case is raising money for a federal campaign.
A mass mailing was sent out this week by Case, asking supporters to donate to a possible campaign.
Case filed as a candidate for the Senate race in 2012, for the seat now held by Sen. Daniel Akaka.
Last year, Case lost to Akaka in the Democratic primary election by 22,000 votes.
The next opening for a Senate seat would be 2010, when Sen. Daniel Inouye says he will run for re-election. Case said he would not enter that race.
"I will not be running against Sen. Inouye," Case said yesterday in an interview.
Federal records show that Case has about $18,000 left in his federal campaign treasury. The new request for money is being sent to the 6,000 donors to his previous campaigns, Case said.
In the mailing, Case says the money would be for his Senate campaign, but he also leaves the door open for other races.
"Opportunities are upcoming for me to seek further state or federal office," he says in his solicitation.
According to federal election laws, money raised for a federal campaign cannot be used for a state or county race, so Case would have to raise separate funds for a state race. While he mulls over his political possibilities, Case says he wants to keep a campaign alive with a Web site and the ability to start up a campaign newsletter.
"Also, you clearly have to have the funds to move around the state and maintain the basics," Case said.
While Case says he wants to run for Congress, he is not ruling out another run for governor. He ran for governor in 2002, losing the primary to former Lt. Gov. Mazie Hirono by 2,600 votes.
Today, Case says he will wait to see what his supporters want him to do.
"If a clear preference of people in Hawaii wanted me to run again for governor, that would be pretty compelling," Case said. "I would just have to evaluate what the practical options were at the time."
Asked why supporters would contribute to an unspecified race, Case said his supporters are people who want change.
"What I am really asking people to do is to contribute to supporting our mutual efforts that we share and could translate into further public service earlier than 2012," Case said.
Case also said that he has heard rumors that he might change parties, and he denied it.
"I have been a Democrat throughout my life, and I have no intention of leaving my party. But, I acknowledge there has been speculation.
"There is no question that my support has been a reform element in the Democratic Party, but it is also cross-party and Independent support," Case said.
"I don't believe that I am going to be changing much, and I don't think I should be leaving my party just because I have a broader base of support than just members of my party."