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Cash-strapped Hawaii can't afford to pay for an election to replace a congressman who is planning to step down next month to run for governor, potentially leaving 600,000 urban Honolulu residents without representation in Washington.
Budget cuts have left the state Office of Elections with about $5,000 to last until July, with a special election costing nearly $1 million, interim Chief Elections Officer Scott Nago said.
U.S. Rep. Neil Abercrombie, a Democrat, announced last week he will resign Feb. 28 after 19 years so he can dedicate his time to the gubernatorial race. His two-year term was set to expire in January 2011.