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Can Hawaii Attain Food Security?
LWV and KITV Present Election Debate (Pearl Johnson)
Big Island Public Finance Campaign Trial (Beppie Shapiro)
Public Access Room: 20 Years of Great Service (JoAnn Maruoka)
Jean Aoki Addresses Hawaii County Meeting (Helen Hemmes)
Happy 90th Anniversary (Piilani Kaopuiki)
LWV-HI Banner Ad: 'Vote Openly on HB 444' (JoAnn Maruoka)
Forum on Supreme Court decision on Campaign Finance (JoAnn Maruoka)
Lessons Learned from Vote Count (Sue Irvine)
The 2010 Legislative Session (JoAnn Maruoka)
Big Island Report (Helen Hemmes)
We're Cleaning Out
Healthcare Bill (Joy Marshall)
Honolulu League Welcomes New Members
Weekly Obtains Rail Final EIS (Pearl Johnson)
Allow citizens to register and vote on same day (Les Ihara)
League Supports Governor's Rail Review (Charles Carole)
Calendar of Events

LWV-HI Banner Ad: 'Vote Openly on HB 444'

A banner ad sponsored by LWV-HI ran across the bottom of page 3 in the Honolulu Star-Bulletin March 25-29. It said simply “VOTE OPENLY ON HB444.” The intent is to push our state House Representatives to have open debate on the merits of the same-sex civil unions bill, House Bill (HB) 444 with recorded public votes, after having done the wrong thing with an anonymous vote to indefinitely postpone a vote. This is a matter of public accountability and government transparency—core values to the League.

A fundamental principle of democracy is the recorded vote. Hawaii's sunshine law calls for public leaders to record their actions and votes for all to see, with the glaring exception of the Legislature, where rules allow decisions to be made without recording members' votes.

Yes, HB444 is controversial, but we don’t want our elected officials to duck and hide in the face of challenges. We want them to show courage and leadership. The House could still vote on HB444. Supporters and even opponents are pushing for a recorded vote.

And the Legislature should amend its rules to prohibit anonymous votes.

JoAnn Maruoka

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