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Spring 1997

President's Message (Jacqueline Kido)
LWV-Hawaii Hired to Conduct Wiki-Wiki Voter Registration Drive
League to Conduct Exit Polling for CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN and AP
Honolulu League Contracted to Oversee Native Hawaiian Vote
Honolulu League Co-Sponsors "Candidates in Focus"
Big Island League Conducts Survey to Assess Community Concern
Contributions Appreciated
Kaua'i One of Ten in Nation to Host LHJ Town Meeting
Kaua'i League Compiles Video and Print Voter Guides
Kaua'i League Live Call-In Radio Program Big Success!
Vote! (Jacqueline Kido)
Con Con '98 -- No! (insert)

President's Message

Could the league have taken on more this election year? I doubt it.

As you'll read in this issue of KaLeoOHana note the new grammatically correct Hawaiian name -- it was one of those record years for election activities in the league. Many worked diligently to get out the vote, deliver information on the candidates, and promote community dialog on issues.

Thanks go out to this year's-let's call them the "Hundred Hour Club"each of whom gave League more than 100 hours of their time for election year activities. Kudos to Honolulu League Vice-President Jean Aoki, Kaua'i League Secretary Andy Parks, State Voter Service Chair Cira deCastillo, Kauai League Vice-President Dee Idica, and Annie Kim, Honolulu membership chair.

The '96 voter in Hawaii should be more educated than ever. If there's someone out there who isn't registered, doesn't know who's running, or doesn't know what the issues are ... well, what can I say.

After extensive study and debate, the League of Women Voters of Hawaii will be advocating against the holding of a constitutional convention in 1998. Along with many community leaders and members of the public, we see no compelling reasons for a Con Con.

A convention is not the only means to amend the constitution. If there are compelling issues with widespread public support, citizens can lobby the legislature which also has the authority to propose amendments. In these tough financial times surely this would be a more prudent way to secure any needed amendments, rather than to spend millions convening a convention that could be dominated by emotional issues such as same sex marriages and gambling, and may accomplish very little.

And finally ... when voter turnout is low, it is evidence that the public is losing faith and interest in the process of governing, or that barriers are blocking citizen participation. No matter how disappointed one is in the field of candidates, he or she must exercise the right to vote. Remember this: voting is NEVER a perfect match. The key is to select issues that are most important to you, then select the candidate you feel would make the right decision most often. When citizens vote they demonstrate confidence in the concept of self-governance.

Jacqueline Kido

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