BJ Penn, a UFC Hall of Famer, launched his campaign for governor of Hawaii earlier this year. Per a report from the Associated Press, a little more than 24 percent of the ballots came in for Penn making him the runner-up by a wide margin. With 90 percent of all precincts reporting, Duke Aiona, Penn’s opponent in the race, has nearly 52 percent of the votes with the numbers still rolling in.
It was another loss for the former two-division world champion whose UFC career came to a halt in 2019. The promotion parted ways with ‘The Prodigy’ after a video surfaced of him being knocked out in a street fight.
Leading up to the primary, BJ Penn posted multiple claims that he would bring “comprehensive solutions to make Hawaii prosperous and strong.” One of the Hall of Famer’s biggest promises throughout his campaign was to end COVID-19 restrictions imposed on the state.
“I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life but I would never run from a fight or sell out my people,” Penn posted on Instagram in late 2021. “As soon as I step into Hawaii’s Governor office I will remove All new federal and state mandates that have been hurting our economy, residents, and ‘ohana. We will get the best doctors, medicines, therapies, and health care the world has to offer to fight this pandemic and always keep Hawaii among the safest and healthiest states in the union.
“We will get rid of all vaccine passports. Hawaii will be a vaccinated with Aloha and Unvaccinated with Aloha policy for everyone. Same with the masks. We will follow the constitution to the tee. I am not here to fit in with the other politicians, I am here to get our freedoms back!”
BP Penn Faced Multiple Legal Issues Following His UFC Release
BJ Penn is still widely considered to be one of the all-time greats to step inside the Octagon despite closing out his career on a seven-fight losing streak. Unfortunately, Penn’s antics outside of the cage have been shedding a negative light on ‘The Prodigy’ in recent years.
In 2019, Penn was issued a restraining order by the mother of his children, accusing the fighter of putting her through years of physical and sexual abuse. Less than a year later, Penn was investigated for DUI following a single-vehicle crash in Hilo, Penn’s hometown. A January 2021 video caught Penn being handcuffed by police on suspicion of DUI following a complaint of reckless driving.
BJ Penn finished his mixed martial arts career with a record of 16-14. He is a former lightweight and welterweight world champion. Sports Illustrated voted Penn as the 2000s Fighter of the Decade. ‘The Prodigy’ was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in 2015