A Republican candidate appears ahead in a May 22 special election to fill the Hawaii seat resigned by Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D).

36 percent of voters in Hawaii's First Congressional District said they would support Honolulu Councilor Charles Djou (R) in the election this month, a plurality of votes in the race.

The polls show Djou benefiting from a divided Democratic field, where former Rep. Ed Case (D) and state Sen. Colleen Hanabusa (D) are both vying for the seat in a traditionally Democratic distric.

In the three-way race with Djou, 28 percent said they would support Case, while 22 percent back Hanabusa. 13 percent are undecided.

Republicans have sought to capture the seat as a moral victory for the party as it seeks to expand its electoral map ahead of this fall's midterm elections.

The poll, conducted by Ward Research for the Honolulu Advertiser from April 23-28, has a 5.2 percent margin of error.