Following is my rebuttal to the article in our morning paper:
Reporting Critique on Candidate Forum
The candidate forum was very well attended considering its Sunday afternoon venue on a beautiful West Hawaii day. But I feel compelled since I was in the audience to make a couple quick comments regarding the forum as reported in West Hawaii Today by Carolyn Lucas-Zenk.
She nailed the subhead, ‘HIRONO A NO-SHOW’ accurately characterizing Mazie’s overall performance in this very important race for U.S. Senator. The headline however, “Lingle attempts to woo W. Hawaii voters at forum” makes it sound like she missed the mark when that certainly was not the case.
I didn’t like everything Lingle did in her eight years as governor, but I was happy to have the teacher furloughs clarified since she’s taken heat for the furlough Friday fiasco since 2009. But we didn’t learn the truth about the furloughs directly from Lingle yesterday so much as her mention of the latest issue of Honolulu Magazine calling out Hirono’s misleading campaign video laying blame for Furlough Fridays entirely on Lingle. The article states the union (HSTA) and the DOE themselves chose to cut 17 instructional days -all Fridays (presumably to most negatively impact students and parents) when Lingle wanted planning and waiver days cut. Additionally, Lingle secured a $10 million line of credit from local banks trying to avoid the furloughs, but the union and teachers were firmly dug in and so we got Furlough Fridays.
Lastly, had you not been at the forum you would surmise from Lucas-Zenk’s reporting that when elected Lingle would be calling for a constitutional amendment banning abortion when in fact Lingle (who is pro-choice) made it clear she believed that would never happen and that social issues like ‘who can marry who and abortion’ were distractions when there were far more critical issues like the economy and national security needing our full attention.
All I can say is make sure you attend the next Lingle/Hirono forum October 10th in Waimea and see for yourselves who we need most in the Senate.
Michelle “Mikie” Kerr
Aloha, Mikie ~just a blogger (fightin’ like a girl)