LaHood talks rail in Hawaii

"I came here to meet with some folks about the transit project, tour the port, to talk to the people how we can continue to really rev up this economy in Hawaii," he said according to Honolulu TV station KHON.

"We think things are progressing fine," he continued. "There's probably a few more things that need to be done, some additional paperwork and once things are finalized, we'll take a careful look at the entire project."

Hawaii is the state where President Obama was born. But even there, his administration's rail proposal has been met with opposition.

"We can't let down our guard for one second because there are people who oppose this project who I think sometimes don't quite understand its impact on how it will reshape our community," Pacific Resource Partnership Director John White told the TV station.

The PRP hosted a reception Tuesday night for LaHood.