Hawaii State Sen. David Ige, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, said he would challenge Gov. Neil Abercrombie in the Democratic primary for governor, according to the Honolulu Star Advertiser.
Abercrombie, who took office in December 2010, announced plans to run for re-election in late April. His term ends in 2014.
So far, Ige is the only challenger to come forward. No Republicans have announced plans to run.
Ige, 56, has served in the state legislature for 27 years and was named chair of the Senate Ways and Means Committee two years ago.
“We need to strengthen and diversify our economy, improve education, and re-engineer government to better serve the people,” he said in a prepared statement.
Ige has represented the Pearl City-Aiea Senate district since 1994. Before that he served eight years in the state House of Representatives.
Ige also has served as Majority Floor Leader and chairman of other Senate committees including health, governmental affairs, and economic development and technology.