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Monday, November 5, 2012
November 5, 2012 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 5:05 PM :: 5442 Views

Election Day Tuesday Nov 6 -- Find Your Polling Place, Sample Ballot

House Candidate Kaniela Ing: “I don’t Support Osama bin-Laden”

Djou: Our Polls Show us Ahead

Djou: We’re on the Verge of Winning, Hanabusa Launches Negative Ads

Akina: Seven Myths About OHA Voting

HD47: Fale Responds to Save Oahu Coalition

Hawaii Republican Party Victory Centers Open All Day Tuesday

Registration Drive Nets 600 New Voters in Laie

SA: A BYUH campus voter registration drive, however, produced about 600 new voters who are eligible to cast ballots in Hawaii

A Romney surge in the Laie region could mean more than just a footnote in a presidential election where Obama is certain to capture Hawaii's four electoral votes. Higher-than-average voter turnout for Romney in the two precincts closest to Laie — Kahuku and Hauula — could make a difference in state House and Senate campaigns.

Colleen Meyer, a conservative former House member challenging state Sen. Clayton Hee (D, Heeia-Laie-Wai­alua), is making sure Laie area voters know she shares their views on traditional marriage and abortion.

In the newly drawn House district that covers Wai­alua to Wai­ahole, Richard Fale, an Army veteran, former legislative aide and farmer, is hoping Laie voters will help carry him over Ulu­lani Beirne, a former House lawmaker.

Fale, a Republican, and Beirne, a Demo­crat, are both Mormon. But Fale, who attended BYU-Hawaii and whose campaign has occasionally set up a tent across the street from campus, has the Romney connection.

Erin Kealoha Fale, Fale's wife, was vice chairwoman of the Romney campaign in Hawaii during the caucuses. She announced Hawaii's delegate count for Romney at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., in August.

Rather than downplay his ties to Romney or the party label, as many Republican candidates have done in other parts of the state, Richard Fale says he and Romney have similar conservative values.

read … Romney shares religion, values of Laie's Mormon community

President Romney for Hawaii

CB: At one point during the televised U.S. Senate debate on Oct. 22, both Mazie Hirono and Linda Lingle referred to Mitt Romney as "President Romney."….

… a Romney win would certainly impact Hawaii — for the better, say local Republicans (if only Hawaii would elect more Republicans); for the worse, say local Democrats, long in control of the levers of power.

Here's another impact: no more presidential vacations in Kailua, no more talk of birth certificates, (Question: What conspiracy theory will Democrats run with for the next four years? Will it involve Bain Capital?) maybe no presidential library (think Chicago).

And another: enormous pride for the Latter-day Saints community in Laie and elsewhere in the islands with the election of the nation's first Mormon president. The Hawaii GOP could reflect proudly on its decision to hold its first-ever presidential caucus this spring (which Romney won).

And did you know that Mitt and Ann Romney honeymooned in Hawaii?

Related: Seven Romney Debate Points for Hawaii

read … Romney

Aiona Best Anti-Rail Option for CD6

SA: Sam Aiona, 46, last held a House seat in 1998 and has run unsuccessfully in several other elections since.

Aiona said he views himself as the most high-profile option for those who oppose the city's $5.26 billion rail project, noting that both Yoshimura and Fukunaga unwaveringly support rail.

Aiona, an independent contractor in the human resources industry, said if someone with higher name recognition had entered the field, he likely would not have run.

"I have the political experience to help those who are opposed to rail," said Aiona, a former chairman of the Hawaii Republican Party.

read … 16 neophytes, veterans compete for Council seat

Carlisle: My Fiscal House is in Order, Cayetano Will Destroy It

CB: So you’ve been in office for a couple of years, what do you think you’ve accomplished? When you look back on those couple years what are the things you feel really good about?

PC: The fiscal house is in order. And I think the sort of wisdom about that is if it's good times then there’s money that’s going around ... Unfortunately people tend to be less vigilant then they should be in dealing with the long-term picture. So it's easy to be somebody who’s in the mayor’s office during flush financial times whereas sort of like the real test is when they’re very difficult economic times can you do the things that you need to do to make sure that the city remains fiscally sound and the future is going in the right direction in terms of retirement benefits, health care and efficiency in government.

CB: How would you describe your fiscal legacy, being as specific as you can?

PC: Tremendous bond ratings. Stable outlook. Increased reserves. Did not raise property taxes. ... The trendings are correct. And that’s exactly what you want to see in terms of reserves. That’s why we maintained the bond rating, and this was during a time when many jurisdictions on the mainland were filing for bankruptcy and some evaporated completely. Places that were communities are no more because they couldn’t afford to keep themselves that way. So I think the fact that reserves are going in the right direction, we’ve now got some rainy day savings fund is important, and that we now have a much more promising outlook for the kind of debt service we’re going to have because of our excellent bond ratings.

CB: So what worries you now that you’re leaving?

PC: Somebody who becomes fiscally irresponsible. That’s exactly what I’d be afraid of. Start spending money on unnecessary projects. Start caving in to the people who are constantly complaining about needing money and people who would then make unsound decisions about how we spend our money.

read … Laying Down a Marker 

Geothermal at Center of Big Island Mayoral Race 

SA: The face-to-face attacks intensified Oct. 11 on "Insights on PBS Hawaii."

"I was pretty taken aback," said Todd Belt, a University of Hawaii at Hilo associate professor and chairman of the Political Science Department. "Billy was saying stuff like, ‘Where have you been? … You only got concerned about this when you decided to run for re-election. You should have addressed it during your administration.'

"Harry took veiled swipes at Billy," he said. "It's the first negative attacks."

Nine percentage points, or 3,589 votes, separated the two in the primary. Kenoi, at 43 percent, expressed confidence on primary night in winning the general election, and Kim, at 34 percent, said he'd have to work hard to close the gap.

"I don't think Billy is necessarily scared, but he just wants to make sure he gets it done," said Belt. "It seems like Billy Kenoi has pulled out all the stops."

Kim has strong support from Puna, where geothermal energy is a worry.

In fact, Kim said he entered the race because of his concern for the loss of county oversight over and community input into geothermal resources, and to ensure geothermal power generation is done safely.

Kim has also learned to use social media, engaging on Facebook with 1,183 friends at last count, and he uses email to get his message out as well.

In recent weeks Kenoi has received some negative attention. The Hawaii island mayor, who signed into law a bill that bans hand-held cellphone use while driving, was caught Sept. 20 and fined $269 for using a cellphone behind the wheel, and for failure to produce a driver's license and insurance card.

West Hawaii Today reported Oct. 25 that he was driving on Nim­itz Highway in Hono­lulu at the time.

YouTube: PBS Hawaii - INSIGHTS - Election 2012: Hawaii Island Mayor

Kenoi Gets an Endorsement: Malu Motta: “I need one governor so he can pardon me.”

read … Kim vs Kenoi

Geothermal developers take Aim at Apoliona: Back Cal Lee, Hulu Lindsey, Robert Lindsey

ILind: Two companies pushing for expanded geothermal drilling and development appear to be the primary forces behind the attempt by legendary prep football coach, Cal Lee, to unseat longtime Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustee and former chair, Haunani Apoliona.

Innovations Development Group Inc. and an affiliate, Honua Group LLC, which advocate development of geothermal resources on behalf of Native Hawaiians, have been the backbone of Lee’s campaign, according to reports filed with the Campaign Spending Commission.

With early and continued campaign support from the two companies, Lee has raised $71,019.83 as of October 22, compared to Apoliona’s total of $53,894.19….

Kuna is also co-manager of Honua Group with Roberta Cabral, state business registration records show. Cabral, in turn, is a director and “Senior Advisor” of Innovations Development. Innovations Development’s management team also includes CEO Pat Brandt and community advisor Mililani Trask.

Trask has recently been active speaking out in support of the controversial Public Lands Development Corporation in various public meetings and in published statements. Geothermal projects could be among those that would benefit from exemptions to zoning and environmental regulations available through the PLDC.

The two companies also made substantial contributions to OHA candidates Carmen “Hulu” Lindsey ($5,000 each), while Honua Group contributed $3,500 to OHA trustee Robert Lindsey.

ILind: When can related companies exceed the campaign contribution limit?

KGI: OHA candidates gather in Waimea for 3rd and final forum

read … Geothermal developers aim to unseat OHA trustee Apoliona

Seen as Too Political: JSC Attempting to ‘Demystify’ Judicial Selection Process

SA: As the number of applications for the Hawaii Supreme Court dwindles, almost all of the finalists for the last four openings on the high court have been state judges.

In contrast, the list of six finalists for a vacancy nine years ago had two private attorneys, including one who was appointed.

The numbers suggest that fewer private attorneys are seeking to serve on the state's highest court.

Judicial Selection Commission members are concerned about the trend, as well as the decreasing number of applications.

The reasons range from the relatively low pay to the perception that the application process is too onerous and too political, commission members say.

But as part of a new era toward openness, members for the first time have been holding meetings with lawyers across the state to encourage more applicants.

As commission member Annelle Ama­ral put it, the move is to "demystify" the process.

"We're very open to receiving all of these applicants and giving them a fair shake," commission Chairwoman Susan Ichi­nose said. "I don't know if that's been the public perception in the past."

The commission is composed of nine unpaid members and is probably the most powerful state entity that does its work in secret….

Gov. Neil Abercrombie has maintained that one reason lawyers don't seek judicial appointments is that they don't want their names made public if they become finalists. He departed from the practices of two previous governors and refused to disclose the lists last year.

A state judge, however, ruled Abercrombie did not have evidence to support that rationale and ordered him to release the names.

The commission rendered the controversy moot when it announced it would disclose the names.

The commission's amendments last year also allow it to release statistical and historical information on patterns and trends in its judicial selection process.

The result was the commission releasing last week the number and gender of applicants for each judicial position the past 10 years.

(NOTE: Having a process which is perceived as political leads to the self-selection of Judges who are comfortable with a politicized process. This in turn leads to a politicized judiciary comfortable with legislating from the Bench.)

read … Private attorneys shy from high court posts

Star-Adv: We Agree With Citizens United Majority, Transparency Needed

SA: However Citizens United has been pilloried by those opposed to limitless campaign spending, the decision does make the case for transparency. In his majority opinion, Justice Anthony Kennedy addresses political spending by corporations in particular. He wrote that "prompt disclosure of expenditures can provide shareholders and citizens with the information needed to hold corporations and elected officials accountable for their positions and supporters. Shareholders can determine whether their corporation's political speech advances the corporation's interest in making profits, and citizens can see whether elected officials are ‘in the pocket' of so-called moneyed interests."

We couldn't agree more. At the congressional level, the federal DISCLOSE Act aimed to compel donors contributing $10,000 or more to a PAC to be identified; its failure to pass through the Senate's filibuster hoops was lamentable. After this election, voters should press their elected representatives to try again.

But Hawaii doesn't have to wait for Washington. State legislators should pass a bill that, at least for Hawaii races, reins in unaccountable, nameless accusations by dragging the whole sorry mess into the sunlight.

read … Citizens United

17 Fil-Ams running for nat’l, state positions

GNI: Two Fil-Ams are running for seats in the US House of Representatives and 15 others are running for the California State Assembly, Hawaii House of Representatives and State Senate, and the Pennsylvania State House.

There are several other Fil-Am candidates, at least 12 in California alone, vying for local and regional offices.

In Hawaii, seven Fil-Ams–including former Hawaii Gov. Ben Cayetano, a strong contender for mayor of Honolulu–are running for local posts.

read … Fil-Ams

CNN Focuses International Effort on 6 Typical Hawaii Progressives, Gets only 3 to Vote

CNN: We featured six nonvoters from Hawaii as a way to highlight the diverse reasons people in the Aloha State don't vote. Because of your efforts, three of them decided to vote, two of those for the first time. A fourth plans to vote in the future, but did not register in time for tomorrow's election (that's yet another reason Hawaii should pass a same-day voter registration law—so we Progressives can milk the vote of every last hippie). Two say they won't vote in this election, but even they said that they were moved by the pro-voting arguments you sent, and that they may reconsider eventually. "I've been reading them all. It's amazing," said Nani Teruya, who does not plan to vote on Tuesday but seems to revel in the fact that she's become a local celebrity of sorts in Maui because of this online campaign. "I love it, you know. I really take into consideration what people are saying. But, you know, I still have my reasons."

Personally, I think convincing three out of six is a great success. I chose these six nonvoters because I couldn't figure out how to convince them to vote in person, on my visit to Hawaii. Their friends hadn't been able to either. Each posed a challenge.

HuffPo: CNN Wants You to Tweet At Hawaiians to Encourage Them to Vote, in Dumbest Use of CNN’s Time, Ever

read … You convinced them to vote

Gas Co Slaps Down Objections from Solar, Wind Scammers

SA: Because the regasification unit would be mobile, it would be exempt from federal regulations requiring "exclusion zones" for LNG facilities, attorney G. Scott Binnings wrote in the filing.

Regarding concerns about potential traffic impacts, Hawaii Gas said although it did not conduct a formal traffic study, it "does not foresee any significant traffic impacts" because the number of shipping containers will be limited to one or two per day. In addition, Hawaii Gas assured the department it will comply with all public outreach obligations and environmental regulations as required under state law, Binnings added.

The Blue Planet Foundation (lobbyists for solar and wind scammers) and the national office of the Sierra Club are opposing the Hawaii Gas plan. Among the concerns the groups expressed in documents filed last month with FERC is that shipping in LNG is bad public policy because it runs contrary to the state's push to reduce its dependence on fossil fuel, and it would encourage the expanded use of hydraulic fracturing to extract natural gas at production sites on the mainland.

"These concerns are wholly outside the scope of this proceeding," Binnings wrote. "The company has asked the Commission for a very limited authorization in order to shore up gas supplies in anticipation of potential short-term supply disruptions. It would be inappropriate to delay the processing of the company's application until industry-wide regulatory changes are implemented."

Binnings also dismissed the groups' contention that FERC should not sign off on the first phase until it reviews the potential impact of the entire project.

"The Phase 1 facilities are mobile and temporary and will not be an integral part of the Phase 2 and Phase 3 facilities, should those facilities ever be constructed. Thus, Phase 1 is not an integral part of Phase 2 and Phase 3, but an independent and temporary project," he wrote.

read … Solar Scammers Slapped Down

Act221: Legislature Should Spend 1000 Days Investigating Itself

CB: I find it curious that a commensurate amount of energy has not been directed to those who were responsible for the 100 percent tax credits for targeted “hi-tech” companies which cost the state close to $500 million, yielded no social benefit, were not properly monitored, and, by many accounts, were an unmitigated disaster.

If the state Legislature held itself to the same standard that it is rightly holding UH, they would spend 1,000 days investigating themselves while maintaining transparency and guaranteeing accountability. However, this would surely be less popular than fueling the populist backlash against UH that wins elections and sells newspapers.

This is based on a UH Economics Department working paper by Andrew Kato, Sumner La Croix and Jim Mak which can be found here.

Related: PRP: Fukunaga Running to Continue Act 221 Tax Credit Scams

read … Wonder Blunder

Permanent Absentee Program Causes Voters who moved not to Receive Absentee Ballots

SA: The fact that absentee ballots sent to a wrong or old address are not forwardable apparently is not widely known.

“The permanent absentee program was established two years ago, and this is the first election cycle where voters were automatically mailed a ballot without having to reapply,” noted Glen Taka­ha­shi, Hono­lulu’s election administrator.

He said when voters apply for the permanent absentee program, they “sign off” on an acknowledgment that they are responsible for informing the elections office of any change to their ballot forwarding address.

read … Absentee

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