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Wednesday, November 7, 2012
November 7, 2012 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 6:38 PM :: 5049 Views

Hawaii Election Results for State, County, and Federal Races

Four Hours No Ballots--Green Party Threatens Lawsuit

Borreca, Boylan and the New McCarthyism

Charles Djou Thanks his Supporters

Lingle: What I Plan to do Next

VIDEO: Ratepayers Revolt

Best Invention of 2012: Time Magazine Recognizes Kona Kampachi

VIDEO: Red-Faced Abercrombie Bickers With Protesters on Stage at Democrats Grand Rally in Hilo

Hawaii Voter Turnout Drops Even Lower

CB: But at the end of the day Tuesday, only 437,000 ballots were cast this year compared to 456,000 cast in 2008, the last presidential election year.

That amounted to 62 percent of registered voters statewide casting ballots for this election, down from 66 percent four years ago — the first time Hawaii's native son, President Barack Obama, won the White House.

Hawaii’s Office of Elections calculates voter turnout as the number of registered voters who cast ballots. Nearly 706,000 people statewide registered to vote in this election, up from the 691,000 residents who were registered for the 2008 election….

Problems instead plagued Oahu, where 19 polling places had to stay open late because they ran out of paper ballots….

But critics, including the Green Party of Hawaii on behalf of state House candidate Keiko Bonk, said that the problems deterred hundreds of people from casting their ballots, perhaps even distorting election results. Bonk lost to House Speaker Calvin Say by 25 percentage points….

read … 62%

House: Say, Dissidents Tussle over Power

CB: House Democrats were meeting privately Wednesday at the Capitol to see if the longtime speaker of the state House of Representatives still has the 26 votes needed to be re-elected, a position he has held since 1999. It is the longest any speaker has served in state history.

Several of Say's allies lost in the primary and general election.

The likely candidate to replace Say is Joe Souki, the emeritus speaker who lost the job to Say.

Souki, the Maui representative, is said to have secured between 22 and 24 votes to be named speaker, while Say has only mustered about 13…. (really? keep reading)

Joe Souki brings his own baggage to a potential speakership. He is a strong supporter of legalized gambling and an inter-island ferry system, for example.

He also has a record of conflicts of interests, specifically involving his work as a lobbyist for the American Chemical Council while testifying on legislation supported by the group.

Still, dissidents would prefer Souki over Say.

When Say was re-elected speaker in January 2011, he had the support of the minority party. He may try to strike a bargain with Republicans again, but the GOP was weakened by retirements and election loses. Democrats now have a 44-7 majority, up one from last session.

GOP Reps. Gene Ward, Cynthia Thielen and Aaron Ling Kohanson are returning to office, joined by four newcomers: Richard Fale, Beth Fukumoto, Lauren Cheape and Bob McDermott. McDermott is a former legislator and Fukumoto is a top party official and legislative operative.

Say could have as many as 20 supporters, (huh?) including: Say, Henry Aquino, Karen Awana, Rida Cabanilla, Isaac Choy, Ty Cullen, Sharon Har, Mark Hashem, Derek Kawakami, Linda Ichiyama, Ken Ito, Jo Jordan, Angus McKelvey, John Mizuno, Marcus Oshiro, Karl Rhoads, Jimmy Tokioka, Clift Tsuji, Ryan Yamane and Kyle Yamashita.

But that number is no longer solid, and some are said to be wavering. He could have as few as 13 backers now.

Souki, who himself supported Say for speaker the last time, appears to be working on a deal with House dissidents and newly elected representatives.

There are the 16 dissidents: (huh?) Wooley, Della Au Belatti, Tom Brower, Mele Carroll, Denny Coffman, Cindy Evans, Faye Hanohano, Gil Keith-Agaran, Chris Lee, Sylvia Luke, Dee Morikawa, Mark Nakashima, Scott Nishimoto, Scott Saiki, Mark Takai and Roy Takumi.

Most of the eight new Democrats elected this year are inclined to side with the dissidents: Gregg Takayama, Romy Cachola, Takashi Ohno, Bert Kobayashi, Kaniela Ing, Nicole Lowen and Richard Onishi.

Speaker among 29 House Democrats Opposing Tax Hikes (Calvin Say’s faction list?)

read … A bunch of agenda-driven speculation from Civil Beat

Old Boy Caldwell Winning Elections ‘Not Good for Democracy’

Shapiro: The Hawaii Campaign Spending Commission's report before the general election revealed the staggering extent — perhaps unprecedented in the nation — to which a single interest group has attempted to control a local election….

Few organizations in Hawaii politics can match PRP's financial resources, and the scary thing is that the group could have afforded to spend many times more than it did.

Pacific Resource Partnership is a trade name for the carpenters' Market Recovery Program Fund, which receives funding from about 200 contractors that have agreements with the union; for every hour a carpenter works, the employer pays 78 cents to PRP.

In a 2010 report to the IRS, the tax-exempt PRP reported taking in $3 million from employer contributions that year, bringing its net assets to $17.2 million; the money spent in the mayor's race barely made a dent in the reserve.

PRP, whose sole purpose is increasing construction work, is governed by a 14-member board, with 12 seats divided between carpenters and contractors and the other seats held by executives of the General Contractors Association and Hawaii Employers Council.

read … Its only Democratic is the Progressive Wins

Star-Adv: Avert the Fiscal Cliff

SA: avert the so-called "fiscal cliff" — the severe package of major tax hikes and spending cuts set to go into effect Jan. 1 that threatens to send the country back into recession…re-election likely will embolden Obama….

"It will probably be messy," Obama told the Des Moines Register less than two weeks ago. "It won't be pleasant.” …the "best is yet to come."

CNBC: Boehner Extends Olive Branch on 'Fiscal Cliff'

read … An Article Titled ‘Re-energized Obama good for U.S.’

State Election Results:

County Election Results:

 

Federal Election Results:

 

Former Miss Hawaii 2011 Lauren Cheape elected to Hawaii House of Representatives

WT: “I’m just so excited to represent the area that I was born and raised in and that my family has been a part of for so long and to work hands on in my community,” Cheape told TWTC in a telephone interview.

“My immediate priority is to address the rising cost of living in Hawaii, agriculture and improving education.”

Read … Former Miss Hawaii 2011 Lauren Cheape elected to Hawaii House of Representatives

Roth Beats Ashida

“I think we had a great ground game,” he continued. “We had a great team, very diverse. We had Democrats, we had Republicans, we had every single ethnic group and it’s just an amazing team effort.”…

Ashida reported campaign receipts of $101,169.95, and expenditures of $107,591.31. His contributor list is filled with both government and private sector attorneys.

He also has generous monetary support from local unions, including: $4,000 from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1186 Political Action Committee; $3,750 from the State of Hawaii Organization of Police Officers (SHOPO); $2,500 from the Hawaii Government Employees Association (HGEA); $2,000 from the Hawaii Laborers Union; and $1,000 from the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU).

Roth reported campaign receipts of $63,598.66 and expenditures of $58,323.22. His list of contributors appears to have a broader base in the community, and there are no union contritutions listed. There are several attorneys who contrbuted to his campaign — including Deputy Prosecutor Rick Damerville, who made Roth’s largest contribution of $2,040 — but far fewer lawyers than who contributed to Ashida.

Ashida ran on his record as a trial lawyer, including the convictions of three men in the highly publicized Christmas Eve 1991 rape and murder of Dana Ireland in a remote area of Puna. He came within hailing distance of the 50-percent-plus-one vote necessary to win the race outright in the August primary, but fell just short. In that election, he tallied 18,794 votes for 49.8 percent, while Roth garnered 12,367 votes or 32.8 percent.

Paul Dolan, who campaigned on not prosecuting marijuana cases under the “lowest law enforcement priority” initiative approved by voters in 2008, was a distant third with 6,572 votes, or 17 percent, and was eliminated from the race.

read … One Win

 

 

Big Island Voters Approve 5 of 6 Charter Amendments

BIVN: Big Island voters soundly rejected Proposal 4, which would allow the County Council to establish special funds without first getting approval from the mayor. A total of 40,854 nay votes were cast compared to 14,835 in favor.

Proposal 5, which would require that members of the county Redistricting Commission from running for election wait an election cycle before running for office, was passed 39,537 to 14,005.

This year, two members of the panel which meets every 10 years to redraw council district boundaries also ran for office. Dru Kanuha was unopposed in the District 7 council race while Valerie Poindexter prevailed in the District 1 council contest in Tuesday’s general election.

read … Charter Amendments

Past and Pseudo-Future Clash at Pearl Harbor

WSJ: The Navy base on Ford Island, the bull's-eye of Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor seven decades ago, still bears scars from that day of infamy: The tarmac shows pockmarks from shrapnel, hangar windows contain bullet holes and the airstrip where the Japanese bombed U.S. planes remains eerily intact despite encroaching weeds.

Now, to the consternation of some retired military officers and history buffs, the U.S. Navy wants to cover up some of that history. The Navy wants to install 60,000 solar panels on the tarmac and surround them with a 7-foot-high fence.

read … Solar Scams

850 Hawaii Doctors to get more pay from Medicaid, Specialists Excluded

SA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced last week the final rules for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which ensures doctors are paid the same for treating Medicare and Medicaid patients. Currently, Medicaid pays 60 percent to 65 percent of what Medicare pays to providers for the same service, according to the state Department of Human Services.

The Affordable Care Act will require that Medicaid pay physicians practicing in family medicine, general internal medicine, pediatric medicine and related subspecialists at Medicare rates in 2013 and 2014.

The state estimates the change will equate to more than a one-third increase in payments to primary care providers. Specialists, however, are excluded from the rate adjustment.

Finding a primary care doctor willing to accept new patients covered by Medicaid, a public health insurance program for the poor, has proved difficult for a growing number of Hawaii residents. Doctors say reimbursements are significantly lower than private health plans for the same services.

In addition to low reimbursements, doctors complain that the Medicaid system has become increasingly onerous and time-consuming, involving cumbersome paperwork and administrative headaches.

The situation is limiting access to care for the state's most vulnerable population.

Hawaii has more than 850 primary care providers participating in Medicaid, according to the state Department of Human Services. The Hawaii rate increases will cost the federal government an estimated $45 million in the first year, DHS said.

read … Doctors to get more pay from Medicaid

Hawaiian’s revenues come under pressure from every region across its network

CAPA: Warnings by Hawaiian Airlines over softening demand on its mainland US flights came to fruition in its 3Q2012 results as a solid top-line performance was muted by significant year-over-year decreases in unit revenue and yields. Pressure in some of the carrier’s new Asian markets also contributed to the declines, which will continue into 4Q2012 as year-over-year capacity growth, particularly in the San Francisco bay area and southern California, remains high.

Hawaiian recorded net income excluding unrealised gains from its fuel hedging programme of USD41 million during 3Q2012, a 35% increase from the previous year. Operating revenue grew 21% to USD549 million, while operating profit jumped 23% to USD75 million.

But those numbers were overshadowed by a 3.6% decline in yields and a 5.7% fall in passenger unit revenues year-over-year during 3Q2012. The company’s unit revenue decrease during the quarter was higher than the 1% to 4% decrease Hawaiian predicted in guidance released on 04-Sep-2012.

The carrier’s decrease in unit costs was also bigger than the 2% to 5% fall previously estimated in the Sep-2012 guidance as unit costs excluding fuel fell 6.8% during 3Q2012. Hawaiian attributed the better than expected unit cost performance to carrying fewer passengers and lower than anticipated maintenance expense.

Hawaiian encountered pressure during 3Q2012 in every region of its network – service to the US mainland, long-haul to Asia and its inter-island offerings.

read … The End is Near

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