HONOLULU - State Sen. Donna Mercado Kim announced Wednesday that she is running for Hawaii's First Congressional District seat that is being vacated by Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa.  Hanabusa is running for governor.

“These are challenging times for our nation and state. The people of our district need a Congresswoman who will stand up to powerful entrenched interests and always protect Hawai'i.  Throughout my life, I have advocated for my constituents and continue to make a positive impact for our families, our keiki, and our kupuna. If given the privilege to serve in Washington, I shall collaboratively work across the aisle to protect Social Security and Medicare benefits, improve
our public schools, keep college education affordable, and continue to advocate for women's rights," said Kim.

Kim has served on the City Council as well as the State Legislature.

Kim ran for the First Congressional District seat in 2014.  That seat at the time was being vacated by Hanabusa so she could run for the late Sen. Daniel Inouye's Senate seat.  Hanabusa lost the Senate race to Brian Schatz.

Mark Takai won the First Congressional seat in 2014.  Last July, Takai died from pancreatic cancer.  Takai had endorsed Hanabusa to take over his seat.  Hanabusa won back the seat in the November elections.

Maui Rep. Kaniela Ing has already thrown his hat into the First Congressional District race.