Political File

News, notes and anecdotes
on government and politics

Monday, August 20, 2001

Clinton-Gore campaign operative
with isle ties takes powerful post

Ted Nakata, who handled the 1996 Clinton-Gore campaign in Hawaii, has been named director of intergovernmental affairs for the Democratic National Committee, according to DNC Chairman Terry McAuliffe.

Nakata, a former Hawaii resident, worked in the state Senate as an aide before working on federal/state relations, planning and policy issues for Govs. John Waihee and Ben Cayetano. Nakata also served as Cayetano's representative in Washington, D.C., and worked on the Gore/Lieberman campaign in Washington state.

A quiet Statehood Day: The three-day weekend that just ended for many residents used to be known as Admission Day weekend; now it's Statehood Day weekend.

The third Friday in August marks the day Hawaii became the nation's youngest state and is celebrated with a holiday for state and county workers.

State lawmakers, however, felt there was confusion among both local residents and newcomers about the name Admission Day, so this year they changed it to Statehood Day.

"Visitors to Hawaii, recent residents and out-of-state students do not make the connection with statehood, as other states commonly refer to the day celebrating the day they were admitted to the union as Statehood Day," the Senate Ways and Means Committee said.

"Admission offices at schools, universities and hospitals often receive inquiries concerning the nature of the holiday," the committee said.

The House Judiciary Committee said it felt Statehood Day "clearly conveys the nature of the holiday and the purpose of its observance and celebration."

Hawaii was admitted to the union on Aug. 21, 1959, a Friday. The state holiday was designated as the third Friday of August to provide a three-day weekend to public employees and others who get the day off.

There apparently were no major events scheduled Friday to honor the state of Hawaii's 42nd birthday.

Over-50 fitness: The first-ever national swim, bike and run series for people 50 years and older will be held in Hawaii Dec. 2.

Gov. Ben Cayetano signed a proclamation last week announcing the $300,000 AARP Tri-Umph! Classic.

"AARP continues to be a growing, active force in Hawaii. Here in the Health State, we welcome events like the AARP Tri-Umph! Classic because they encourage all of us to get out and become more fit, as well as draw others to the islands to experience our healthy, healing environment," the governor said.

The event at Schofield Barracks will include a 400-meter swim, 12.4-mile bicycle ride and 3.1-mile run.

Healthy eating: September is Good Nutrition Month, and U.S. Rep. Neil Abercrombie wants Hawaii's senior citizens to eat healthier.

Abercrombie and HMSA will sponsor a good-nutrition event tomorrow morning at the Moiliili Senior Center on South King Street.

A state nutritionist will emphasize the importance of seniors eating five servings of fruits and vegetables each day.

Good nutrition later in life may help lessen the effects of diseases such as osteoporosis, obesity, hypertension, heart disease, certain cancers and gastrointestinal disorders, according to the FDA.

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