Hanabusa sweeping state before primary

  • Bill Buley/ The Garden Island

    U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa waves to passersby on Kaumualii Highway in front of Kauai Community College on Monday.

LIHUE — As four lanes of vehicles passed by Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa and some of her supporters Monday afternoon, there was a lot of honking and waving and shouting.

And to Hanabusa, that’s a good sign.

“This reaction that gives you the best sense of how people are feeling,” said Hanabusa, who is challenging Gov. David Ige. “When people feel compelled from the inner lanes to toot at you and wave at you, that’s a great statement.”

The Democrat waved back, smiled and repeatedly said, “thank you.”

“I’ve had this reaction throughout the state,” Hanabusa continued as she stood near Kaumualii Highway by Kauai Community College. “No matter what anybody may say, the people are behind us in this campaign.”

The U.S. Representative met with Kauai veterans Monday morning, and later talked with people working on the Kauai Philippine Cultural Center project and checked in with business leaders.

Following lunch at Kukui Grove Center, she took a walk and visited with shoppers, asking about their concerns.

“It’s the best way to get a sense of the community and where people are,” she said as her supporters wearing white Hanabusa T-shirts waved signs that read, “Hanabusa for Governor.” “You have to come here and talk to them and find the issues.”

As with many running for office, it’s a busy final week heading into Saturday’s primary election. She was in Kona Sunday, will be in Honolulu today, Molokai Wednesday and then on to Hawaii Island later in the week.

She likes the way the campaign is going.

“We’re feeling really good,” Hanabusa said.

She believes people are taking a hard look at the state’s leadership, measuring the candidates and deciding who is the best person to lead Hawaii.

“It’s also a matter of our records and where we are and where we’ve come from and who they trust to bring us forward,” Hanabusa said.

A key question, she said, is “do people feel they are better off today?”

“We’re not,” Hanabusa said. “I think that’s underlining everything else. How do people feel in their hearts and their guts? That’s what it comes down to. It comes down to who they want to lead.”

There is no doubt in Hanabusa’s mind she is that person.

“I feel very confident that it is,” she said.

She again pointed to the missile alert crisis in January in Hawaii and that the Ige administration let 38 minutes pass before sending a second alert to let people know it was a false alert.

“What was going on in that 38 minutes?” she said.

Ige has previously said the false missile alert was caused by human error and steps have been taken to be sure it will not happen again.

She also pointed to the accidental release of a murder suspect, Brian Lee Smith, in late July from the Hawaii Community Correctional Center. He was free for two days before turning himself in.

“People are going, ‘What’s going on?” she said.

Ige released a statement that he was upset by what happened and officials were investigating the matter.

Hanabusa questioned why it took Ige so long to sign an executive order calling for expedited pay for Hawaii National Guard deployed for duty for the flooding on Kauai and lava flows on Hawaii Island.

About 600 guard personnel have served on the Big Island since the Kilauea volcano eruption in early May, the Associated Press reported, and about 100 are still there.

An estimated 150 members were deployed to Kauai during the flooding earlier this year, and about six remain to escort people in and out of flood areas, the AP said.

In some cases, guardsmen faced two to three weeks of processing time before receiving their first paycheck, AP reported.

“No matter how they spin it, there’s still a question of, ‘why didn’t you take care of the guards?’ Hanabusa said. “Yes, deploy them. But why aren’t they paid?”

Ige signed a proclamation Friday extending disaster emergency relief and enacting a provision allowing state agencies “to pay, as expeditiously as possible.” But Hanabusa said it took too long for Ige to act.

“Those are the things I think weigh heavily on people,” she said, “and people want a new leader.”

  1. harry oyama August 7, 2018 1:07 am Reply

    Just another ruse, once (if she gets in) secures the governorship, do you think for once second she’ll care about the average Joe six pack? Of course not he does not contribute $millions in her election, so why should she care, expect for his vote?

    Maybe the media should indicate how she benefited from being on the Rail commission while being paid much more than you or I and the $75 million tax break for large development interests that the average taxpayers will be stuck paying for additional infrasture requirements.

  2. manawai August 7, 2018 7:12 am Reply

    “Hanabusa sweeping state…”

    What? With a cloth?

  3. gordon oswald August 7, 2018 7:47 am Reply

    Why is it the State of Hawaii continues to put up the most pathetic, unqualified, and lack of common sense candidates to represent us? The Democrat party is imploding throughout the mainland, and it would be nice if our Democrat party in Hawaii could buck the trend of stupidity. Other than Tulsi Gabbard, who is a winner, the Hawaii career public suckers we have to choose from are HORRIBLE! We are almost as stupid to vote for these losers as they are when they get up in the morning!

  4. localgirl August 7, 2018 10:16 am Reply

    Still not sure what she’s accomplished in the last few years. Nothing at the Federal level and she was on the rail board which failed the people with poor management. All she can do is criticize, not tell us what she’s been doing for the people of Hawaii. I personally have no idea what she’s accomplished!

  5. Joe Gilmore August 9, 2018 6:27 pm Reply

    “She again pointed to the missile alert crisis in January in Hawaii and that the Ige administration let 38 minutes pass before sending a second alert to let people know it was a false alert.”

    The order of notification that day… Tulsi, Ige, Schatz. I would bet Hanabusa’s office called her immediately. We pretty much know what We know what Tulsi, Ige, Schatz did in those 38 minutes, but why is no one asking Hanabusa why she didn’t call her dedicated 24/7 Pentagon liaison and let us know something? Can someone please ask her for her and her Honolulu offices phone records for the day? Who did she call? Her Ko ‘Olina friends? Ige did take 38 minutes trying to figure out his twitter password while Hanabusa made a conscious decision to do NOTHING! Have we been inconveniencing her with our troubles???? Again, from our Washington reps Gabbard and Schatz, they did what was expected. Hanabusa? We have no idea what she did after her office in Honolulu notified her. Someone needs to ask her that. I want to hear her say, “Well I wasn’t governor, that’s the reason I consciously CHOSE to let you all worry about it. I wanted to make a point.”

  6. Joe Gilmore August 9, 2018 6:37 pm Reply

    I can actually answer that. The person that has said over and over that “She went to Washington to FIGHT for women’s rights and our Kapuna!” actually sponsored not just 1 bill on that subject, she timelessly championed EXACTLY ZERO bills on women’s rights OR our Kapuna IN 8 YEARS!!!! She killed herself by sponsoring 2 fluff bills over her 8 YEARS! The one form 2011, that took everything she had and the reason she couldn’t get the next one done over the next 7 years was to rename a post office! (No kidding) and wait for it…. it was for woman whose rights were not respected, right? Nope….a guy. Her second bill in 2017 to create a display (for women, right?) Nope, named after a male Admiral. What has she done, you ask? I believe you’ll find her net worth went up substantially. There is that…. SMH

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