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Monday, April 9, 2018
Hanabusa: Political Insiders are My Strength
By News Release @ 1:38 AM :: 3607 Views :: Politicians

Ige's Calls for "Transparency" Undermined by His Own Record

From Hanabusa Campaign, April 8, 2018

The recent endorsement of Colleen Hanabusa by leading members of the Hawai‘i Senate and House is a clear statement on the strength of Colleen Hanabusa’s leadership, in stark contrast to the weak relationship David Ige and his administration have built — or neglected to build — with the Legislature throughout his first term.

These legislators are the people Hanabusa and Ige have worked with for decades. Lawmakers who know them both and who may be in the best position to judge on the ability to lead.

With their endorsement they praised Hanabusa’s ability and capacity to set the agenda, communicate, engage in productive discussion and take action, and to do so with a sense of urgency.

Team Ige’s reaction? A series of media attacks filled with vague, unsubstantiated accusations and complaints about the “lack of transparency” in state government.

How ironic that the head of Hawai‘i’s government is complaining about a lack of transparency, the greatest shortcoming of his own administration. For years, people have struggled to understand just where Ige stands on critical issues, what his plans are, and who is actually in charge in any given situation.

Here are just some examples of the confusion, secrecy and flip-flops and flat out lack of leadership that define the Ige administration:

  • No clear position or leadership on the Thirty Meter Telescope on Mauna Kea.
  • Delays and missteps to modernize the Tax Department, including inappropriate manipulation of progress reports.
  • Failed negotiations to resolve tax collection issues with Airbnb.
  • A floundering hands-off approach to development and homelessness issues in Kaka‘ako.
  • Ambiguity and disorganization surrounding state energy policy.
  • Botched airport improvements.
  • Long-delayed highway maintenance and allowing federal highway funds to expire.
  • The on-again-off-again threat of evictions at Pu‘uohua o Wai‘anae.

And certainly, the most telling failure of transparency of all? The appalling false missile alert in January which revealed the internal confusion, inability to communicate and an utter void of leadership that are constants in the Ige administration.

In that singular instance, David Ige demonstrated the ways he and his team were completely incapable of understanding the fear and anxiety that people suffered.

“You can’t lead from an ivory tower,” says Hanabusa. “You have to engage and work with people every single day. One thing I think people will agree on: with me, you always know where I stand. We may not always agree, but even when we don’t, it’s important to have an open, honest dialog to exchange ideas and come to a decision.”


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