As described in “Fear and Loathing and Hope at the Capitol” (https://mailchi.mp/garyhooser/fear-and-loathing-and-hope-at-the-state-capitol) we have before us an opportunity to #RebuildTheHouse
But it ain’t gonna happen without your help. That’s the bottom line my friends. We have a genuine opportunity to fundamentally change the very nature of our government, but to close the deal and make this happen requires you and many others to step up and help.
Across the islands, there are many qualified and credible individuals running for election to the State House. The Pono Hawaii Initiative has endorsed 13 (https://ponohawaiiinitiative.org/endorsements-2020) so far and we continue to review another 5 very promising House candidates.
The 2020 Primary Election of August 8th has the potential to be a game-changer for policy and politics in Hawaii.
The election of Kim Coco Iwamoto (https://www.kimcoco.com) alone would remove the culture of fear and shake the very foundations of the State House. With Kim Coco Iwamoto serving in the State House, issues of economic justice would no longer be shunted to the back of the line. She is experienced in business, is a former legal aid attorney, and has served as a member of the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission, and on the Hawaii Board of Education. Her commitment to environmental protection is unequivocal.
Currently, no person of Hawaiian ancestry sits on the House Water, Land & Hawaiian Affairs Committee. How does anyone in House Leadership think this is acceptable? No Hawaiians on the Hawaiian Affairs Committee? Clearly, there are Representatives in the House now who are of native Hawaiian descent, so either they have chosen not to sit on this committee or leadership does not allow them to. Both options are untenable. The election of Walter Ritte (https://ritte.org/) to the State House of Representatives would ensure this would not be the case in the future, of that you can be absolutely sure. Likewise, his election would mean that the House would no longer pass in relatively muted silence measures that attempt to sell our public trust resources to the highest bidder.
I know Kim Coco Iwamoto and Walter Ritte personally and do not exaggerate the huge positive impact either or both of them would have on the Hawaii legislature. Both need your active support – please contact their campaigns directly to volunteer and or make a financial contribution.
Today I write especially to help and support the following three remarkable women: Kau’i Pratt-Aquino (https://www.kauiprattaquino.com), Becky Gardner (https://www.beckygardnerhawaii.com), and Shannon Matson (https://electshannonmatson.com). Each is without question highly qualified to serve in the State House, each share our core world view of putting people and the planet above corporate profits, and each can win.
But they need today an extra push that I am hoping you can help with. Like every candidate, they need people to help with phone calling and putting up yard signs – but most of all they need today your financial contributions.
While the official date of the Primary is August 8th, because of the “all mail-in voting” nature of this particular election – ballots will begin arriving on or about July 20.
It’s crunch time. People start voting in less than 30 days from now.
Printing and mailing a single postcard to registered voters cost each candidate approximately $4,000 to $5,000. None of these three candidates are wealthy and all have young families. They have put their personal lives on hold in the hopes of serving in public office, in order to make the world we live in a better place. Of this core motivation, I am certain.
Campaigns cost money to run and the candidates must have help to pay these expenses. This is the home stretch. They cannot let up, and neither can we.
Please give what you can today if possible, be it $20, $200, or up to $2,000. Contributions made prior to Monday, June 29th are especially important.
Kau’i Pratt-Aquino (https://www.kauiprattaquino.com) – House District 48 (Kaneohe, Kahaluu, Waiahole) Kau’i Pratt-Aquino goes to sleep every night and wakes up every morning thinking about how to help and support her community. She is a mother, a lawyer, and an extraordinarily effective community advocate. Raised in Koʻolaupoko, she is a seventh-generation Native Hawaiian who brings over seventeen years of experience in community advocacy and development to the legislative arena. All Hawaii will benefit from the election of Kau’i Pratt-Aquino. Donate online to Kau’i Pratt-Aquino’s campaign here. (https://secure.actblue.com/donate/friends-of-kau-i-pratt-aquino-1)
Becky Gardner (https://www.beckygardnerhawaii.com), House District 20 (St. Louis Heights, Palolo, Maunalani Heights, Wilhelmina Rise, Kaimuki) Becky Gardner is an attorney with extensive experience working at the state legislature. She is an elected member of the Kaimuki Neighborhood Board and a founding board member of Envision Kaimuki. As the child of a Filipina mother and an English-German father, Becky learned the value of diversity and honoring culture early on. She is driven by a passion to help create a better world for her two daughters and to share with the community her vision for a just, equitable and sustainable future. We need Becky Gardner serving all of us in the Hawaii House of Representatives. Donate online to Becky Gardner’s campaign here. (https://secure.actblue.com/donate/friends-of-becky-gardner-1)
Shannon Matson (https://electshannonmatson.com), House District 3 (Hilo, Keaau, Kurtistown, Volcano) Born in Honoka’a and raised on Hawaii Island, Shannon Lopeka Matson, is a graduate of U.H. Hilo and has been an active community leader in the Hilo and Puna area for over 15 years. Kealoha Pisciotta says it best, “I support Shannon Matson in her run for the House Of Representative for my District. She embodies a new kind of leadership that is needed in this time of great change. As a Mother, Business Owner, Environmental, and Social Justice Advocate, I believe she has what it takes to be a champion for the people and the land.” Donate online to Shannon Matson’s campaign here (https://electshannonmatson.com).
Please if at all possible, focus your help and attention today on these three women. As individuals and certainly as a group, they have the capacity to change our world here locally. Whether you live in their particular district or not, please offer them your help and support, as their election will help all Hawaii.
I cannot over-emphasize the urgency of this request. Please help each of them today if you can.
For our children, for our grandchildren, and for the planet – let’s do this.