Tuesday, June 26, 2012


PICK YOUR POISON: It looked bad- real bad. Now?- maybe not so much.

There appeared to be the proverbial slim and no chance to stop our 2nd US Congressional District from falling into the hands of one of, if not the most obnoxious, disingenuous and generally politically repulsive hack in the islands.

Perennial political opportunist Mufi Hannemann announced early for the seat and as the list of no-name challengers grew it was punctuated by a name that seemed equally repulsive in its own way: Gabbard.

The one running for the 2nd CD wasn't State Senator Mike Gabbard- the bigoted homophobe who was in large part responsible for our first-in-the-nation state constitutional amendment allowing the banning of gay marriage- a voter approved measure that followed the first-in-the-nation state supreme court ruling that had mandated equity in marriage.

Another political hack, Gabbard was one of those Hawai`i Republicans who saw his political future in the GOP as nonexistent and so was reborn an environmentalist Democrat.

The Gabbard on the ballot is his daughter, Honolulu Councilmember Tulsi Gabbard, who, although she led the also-rans in early polls, trailed Hannemann by a wide, almost insurmountable margin.

It was hard to not see Tulsi as an almost equally repulsive choice, having supported her father's evangelical hate-spewing zealotry in the late 90's and having little or no chance to win to boot.

Apparently we aren't the only ones that have reserved a little corner of political hell for the Mufster- a hack in the truest sense of the word- whose style is to tell people what he thinks they want to hear unless he's busy race-baiting or staking out equally repulsive positions on civil rights.

We thought, "oh well- why bother." The seat held by the late beloved progressive Patsy Mink had already fallen into the hands of the blue-dog devil Ed Case for a few years a few years back and, well, we've become accustomed to falling out of the political frying pan.

But a funny thing happened on the way to the proforma. Not only has Tulsi Gabbard renounced her prior positions on marriage and civil unions, but a recent poll in Civil Beat shows she has not only caught up but passed Hannemann in a recent poll by a four point margin (35%-31%)- just slightly more than the 3.7% margin of error.

We should not though that her position is not exactly pro gay marriage but that slithery-slimy one where she's opposed to state involvement in marriage of any type and favors civil unions for all

Unfortunately other candidates, like the more progressive Esther Kia`aina, are seemingly out of it at around 10%. But the question this raises as to the Tulsi- Mufi race (are we really supposed to say "Tulsi-Mufi without laughing for the next five months?) is, do you believe her?

The answer is another question? Does it matter?

In essence it is one of those "potted plant" elections- in other words one where our first reaction to the announced presumed victor is, "I'd vote for a ficus before I'd vote for him."

Tulsi Gabbard's transformation has got to raise a few eyebrows, from a military yahoo who quit her state senate seat to kill Arabs after rallying the home troops to enshrine bigotry in our state constitution, to a liberal lioness.

But it's going to be a lot easier for us and many others to forget the past if the choice is between (as local talk show host Jonathan Jay posted on Facebook) "the tall one and the hot one."

Well all we can say is we'd rather get burned from the heat than looked down on by corruption from above.

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