Some of the state’s top elected officials will hold a reception March 31 in Honolulu to support the Ready for Hillary PAC — even though Hillary Clinton hasn’t formally declared her intent to run for president in 2016.

Probably just a matter of time, however. Texas Tea Partier Ted Cruz was the first to jump in early Monday and other Republicans are expected to follow shortly.

U.S. Sens. Mazie Hirono and Brian Schatz and U.S. Rep. Mark Takai are hosting the PAC reception at the Pegge Hopper Gallery downtown.

UPDATE: An earlier version of this post wondered why Rep. Tulsi Gabbard was not also hosting the event. Jadine Nielsen, the Hawaii Democratic National Committeewoman, tells me that as vice chair of the Democratic National Committee, Gabbard “needs to stay neutral in the primary election” and so “is not able to participate in any Ready for Hillary activities, or activities for other potential candidates for President.”

Ready for Hillary PAC

Ready for Hillary PAC

The host committee includes Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell, former U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa and other notable local Democrats.

Suggested contributions range from $20.16 (get it?) to $1,000.

Thus far, as many as 20 Republicans are expected to vie for their party’s nomination, and Jeb Bush, Scott Walker and Marco Rubio are in the top tier.

But no other Democrat comes close to Clinton’s popularity, though Joe Biden and a few others are said to be thinking about challenging her in the primaries.



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