by Andrew Walden
Complaints have been filed with the Hawaii Campaign Spending Commission and the Honolulu Ethics Commission October 13, 2020, regarding alleged use of Honolulu Council email for campaign purposes in support of Mayoral candidate Keith Amemiya and backing Radiant Cordero, Manahan’s Chief of Staff, who is running to replace him in Council District VII as he terms out.
Apparently sent from the same “City and County of Honolulu” account used to bulk-mail constituent newsletters, the emails are titled:
The anonymous complainant explains:
The email seems normal at a first glance, but when you click on the "unsubscribe link" at the bottom of the email, it redirects you to a page titled "City and County of Honolulu"; that same page also provides a link back to https://councilmembermanahan.com/ (Councilmember Joey Manahan's official legislative website). Councilmember Manahan advertises this website on all of his legislative material and it is assumed to be the official platform for his role as a City Councilmember.
The email service account (Mailchimp) that was used to send out the email is the same email service that Councilmember Joey Manahan uses for official government correspondence with constituents (usually sending COVID-19 updates and legislative newsletters).
In my opinion, this is a clear violation as Councilmember Manahan cannot be using the same email platform and lists that he uses to communicate with constituents (in his official role as an elected official) to endorse/support any particular candidate.
Councilmember Manahan did not respond to a request for comment.