Updated Oct. 11 5:30 p.m.

Washington, D.C., is a long way from Honolulu, Hawaii. We’re trying to bring it closer to home.

Civil Beat has stationed Michael Levine in the nation’s capital to provide the kind of coverage of issues and events affecting Hawaii that you can only get by watching things play out up close. Hawaii has always had a strong — and sometimes strained — relationship with the federal government. Policies are often dictated by officials 5,000 miles away. And Hawaii is more dependent on the federal treasury than nearly any other state.

We’re the only Hawaii media outlet with a full-time staffer in the nation’s capital. And that gives Mike — and Civil Beat readers — a unique view of our congressional delegation and how they are watching out for the state’s interests.

Here at Civil Beat HQ in Kaimuki, we talk with Mike nearly every day. We often call him up on Skype and the story discussions are lively and far-reaching.

It occurred to us that you might want to listen in on some of those discussions, too.

So welcome to DC808: On The Wire. Civil Beat’s Chad Blair talks politics — his favorite subject — and other issues with Mike, just like they did when they sat a few feet from each other in our newsroom. We hope to dial you in with us every Thursday, and maybe the distance between our state and our federal government won’t seem quite so far.

WE MISSPOKE: Michael Levine said Gov. Lingle’s campaign touted Mitt Romney’s debate performance, but the press release actually came from Hawaii Republican Party Chairman David Chang.

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