Hawaii Republicans in the Spring, Part 2

Aloha Friends,

Welcome back. Writing to Republicans and conservatives to initiate discussion, I encourage others to write and debate the issues, candidates and policies. This is an opportunity to highlight the progress of Hawaii Republicans and the conservative cause. I’ll respond to your comments after these parts go out.


HRP says we have 25 repeat candidates (less than reported in January but still good!). Don’t know if that includes incumbents. We haven’t seen a list but Apia, Kaapu, Capelouto, Greco, Kong, Radke, Bateman, Hairgrove and Shimizu told me they are running and can use your support. A state rep announced that Pine is not seeking reelection to the state house. http://hawaii.gov/elections/. Stand by for a surprise Windward candidate.

CSC. Money is not everything…..as long as you have it. From the last half of 2011, the Republicans with the most COH are Ward $40k, Johanson and Thielen 32k and Hapai 18k. Raising the most were Johanson $24k, Marumoto 22k and Ward 11k.

The Dems COH are Green 227k, Hee 365k, Kim 239k, Choy 55k, Dela Cruz 71k, Gabbard 63k, Kidani 63k, Kobayashi 71k, Menor 52k, Oshiro 65k, Takai 57k, Taniguchi 127k, Tsuji 60k, Tsutsui 104k, Yamane 53k, Yamishita 50k, Ige 61k, Chang 32k, English 24k, Galuteria 33k, Garcia 28k, Ichiyama 27k, Ito 40k, Keith-Agaran 24k, Kokobun 22k, Kouchi 48k, M Lee 34k, Mizuno 27k, Nishihara 34k, Nishimoto 40k, Rhodes 30k, Say 33k, Tokuda 27k and Wooley 24k. Leading raisers were Choy 26k, Fukunage 24k, Green 31k, Hee 65k, Kidani 28k, Kobayashi 67k, Kouchi 31k, Ige 22k.

Carlisle raised $53k with $279k COH, Caldwell raised 73k with 73k COH. Cayetano’s account was not yet open but the mayoral race is a no-brainer for fiscal conservatives.

2010/2014 candidates Abercrombie raised $1.1M with 829k COH, Aiona raised 3k with 30k COH, Schatz raised 222k with 209k COH, and Finnegan has 9k COH.

The State Committee extended the window for district caucus meetings to the end of February. Baffled by reapportionment and halfway into the caucus period, we had to punt. Unfortunately, it is the end of March and the list of state delegates is still not compiled – at least this candidate hasn’t been provided the list (note: yesterday, I was told it is still being compiled), or the requested nominations papers.

Caucus meetings – Kauai, N Shore, Big Island, Ewa, Windward and more were a great time to see friends and meet new participants. District chairs did a good job, some were great. The Kona caucus was the best venue – County Chair Smith hosted it at a beach Pavilion at the old Kona Airport just before sunset. Sweet.

We must be organized. A Kauai friend called Thursday February 16. Their district caucus meetings would be Saturday February 18. This snapshot from the HRP website February 16 tells us that Kauai already held their meetings on February 4.

HD 14 Feb. 4 10:30 AM Lihue Neighborhood Center
HD 15 Feb. 4 10:30 AM Lihue Neighborhood Center
HD 16 Feb. 4 10:30 AM Lihue Neighborhood Center

I since heard the HRP had two websites running conflicting caucus information.

HRP distributed confusing delegate allocation forms in the caucus packets. After the first weekend, county chairs helpfully sent out new instructions (and nixed the use of the county registered voter list being used to disenfranchise members).

Heads up for Credentials cmte. At least one chair has no idea who prepared his delegate list. Several districts did not hold a meeting and I don’t recall that ever happening. At least one gave less than the required seven day notice. “Someone” added names after a caucus meeting. Many districts turned in their list past the seven days allowed.

For all of us who believe taxes are too high, government too intrusive, and regulations on business too plentiful….and for legislators who actually vote that way. Under the umbrella of The Honolulu TEA Party, the Tax Day rally is at the Capitol on April 16. Details at Adrienne@kingandking.com. To see where Hawaii ranks and why our tax policy is a business killer: http://www.scribd.com/fullscreen/83192302 page 106.

Everyone has a place, or they should. In the heat of 2008, we didn’t throw out Ron Paul people (even the one who challenged me to fisticuffs at Seabury) or throw them off the platform cmte. I never threw out Ryan when he publically pummeled me. Or, Palcic for his antics (now your best reapportionment guy). All the while, we haven’t thrown out Burgess for his conservative anti-Akaka Bill opposition to Lingle and Djou or Keppeler for his pro-Akaka position on the platform cmte. We never threw out Fasi for campaigning against Lingle. Even Golojuck (remember?) wasn’t ‘eliminated.’ Leaders speak about inclusiveness and ‘coming together’ but we see differently. We shouldn’t be throwing people out. Google Groupthink.

HD8 Gapero inadvertently blew the whistle by asking how Thoma got on her state delegate list. Thoma wasn’t at caucus and the appointment period hasn’t begun. He wasn’t on the party rolls or in voter vault. Regardless, Thoma’s name appeared on her delegate list and he voted at the county convention to remove someone else. Gapero was ordered to break the rules and add Thoma to her delegate list. She refused. She was thrown out again (a do-over) last night by Clark, Fontaine, Russell, Lussier, Onellion, Chu (proxy), Marshall and an odd proxy from Wilson who resigned and moved to the mainland last year. One district chair reports that Clark said she was told by someone (you know who) that ‘we’ had to “get rid of troublemakers” (you know who).

Do nothing=good? Gapero ran as a Republican for County Council. She made calls and held her district caucus, she successfully organized and conducted her Pres caucus, and she was the prime organizer for the successful Maui convention. We have district chairs that made NO caucus effort or failed to even hold a caucus and chairs who did not conduct their Presidential caucus operation. We have counties that didn’t have a convention. We have state vice chairs that have done nothing. Everyone needs to do their job and we need everyone.

Timing. Less than a week after Clark first removed Gapero (two weeks after removing Ghean), Clark announced that NCW/Lingle FD Hellreich made Clark a guest of the national convention delegation.

We want to win a lot of seats, from the bottom to the top of the ticket. We need to do so without sacrificing more of the HRP’s integrity or our members.

Groupthink. A most dangerous affliction. At state and county level, leaders (and candidates) surround themselves with ‘yes men.’

Your right, but not in Honolulu. Last week, the judge ruled against Baker’s Concealed Carry lawsuit.

Meridian. Having fallen out of favor with the Lingle team (for sketchy reasons), Lingle consultant Peschong is now preparing her grassroots team. Peschong is one of the best in the nation.

Last weekend’s pro-sanity (ok, it was an anti-this version of rail) raiser was a most eclectic gathering of issue-oriented people. A mosh pit of fiscal conservatives and environmentalists. Organizers (led by the Slater’s) at the Burns’ home were pleasantly surprised by the overflow crowd. Everyone pulls their weight – Slom was directed to pick up additional paper products and food on his way. This bandwagon has a driver.

Inclusiveness. Until we’re inclusive, we can’t win. HRP, throughout the organization, is pushing away people. I am not opposing any Republican. I support and encourage inclusiveness, even when we disagree.

The most important value a party can hold is integrity. District chairs can’t convince neighbors who don’t trust us to participate. Donors and volunteers have to believe that their money and time is going to be spent honestly and wisely. We have leaders who don’t use the “R” on their website or literature, candidates hide the R on their street signs. We must reestablish integrity, principles, efficiency and competence and then volunteers and donors will join us.

Knowing and following the rules is important IF an organization is trying to demonstrate integrity, honesty and transparency to repair years of exclusiveness and current fiscal ‘difficulties.’ When we follow the rules, running a party is easy. The HRP challenges are http://oahuleague.org/the-presidents-message-order-or-chaos. We need knowledge and experience to assist our inexperienced, energetic leadership team.

We’re upside down. Our leadership forgot who works for whom. Members are berated by officers. District chairs are told that their problems are insignificant. Leaders pay themselves before they pay debts. Leaders defend party inaction rather than getting assistance for district chairs. Leaders should be working to make life easier for volunteers to do their job. District chairs have the hardest job in the party. County chairs should be making their district chairs’ job easier. The party chair ought to be supporting county chairs, not berating them. The state chair and Exec Cmte, well, this is Leadership 101. We’re better when we are right side up.

We can do better. We have to be inclusive, not just talk about it. We need knowledge, experience and integrity. We have basically the same Exec Cmte who took the party to $110,000 debt, who had our officials (except Slom) push out Kaauwai, and who oversaw the questionable election in January. We have yet to see a community service project.   Our only (untested) message is that voters want a two-party system. We have less candidates than reported in January, our coalitions are invisible and Obama’s on the ticket. These are not secrets, you already know this. This isn’t about finding fault, it is about getting better. The potential exists. We need to expect more.

I am passionate about our party. I want to participate and I am as involved as I am allowed. I watch and analyze. A reader suggested that I report only “good” things while running for committeeman. That would be easy if the HRP did only good things. You should be skeptical of reports with only the good, or only the bad. Members want to know and trust our leaders. Our members want to know where their contributions are going. Our members want to know that our leaders are leading by example.

Two thirds through our legislative session and our legislators are fighting a bevy (short for ginormous) fee hikes and Dem gut and replace legislation. Thank Republican legislators but please thank their staffs who really keep them on track.




Last three reports:

State of the Party

Buzz – RNC Winter Meeting, Days 1, 2, 3

The Holiday’s Caucuses and Candidates