Will Aiona veto HB 444 (II)?

Would somebody kindly look at this press release from Rep. Tom Brower and decipher for me exactly what he wants Aiona to do and what his logic is — if there is any.

Isn’t this the legislator who put out a press release calling the House passage of HB 444 a perversion of the Democratic process after he voted for the bill himself?

CIVIL UNIONS: How is Acting Governor Acting?

I wonder, on some political or personal level, might Lt. Governor Duke Aiona be open to allowing the civil union bill to become law?

During Governor Linda Lingle’s two- week absence, House Bill 444 is in the hands of our state’s leading opponent.

Despite public rhetoric against the bill, Aiona has yet to take the ultimate step to stop it: Veto power.

Article 5, section 04 of the Hawaii State Constitution states that “in the event of the absence of the governor from the State… such powers and duties shall devolve upon the lieutenant governor during such absence or disability.”

Aiona has exercised his veto power on one measure during Lingle’s absence (Senate Bill 2401).

If he does not take advantage of this power and (hypothetically-speaking) the bill becomes law, he cannot say he did “everything” he could to kill the bill. Whether he makes a choice or not, he still has made a decision. He would be just as responsible as the Governor and the other legislators for the bill’s passage.

Making the tough decisions and accepting the consequences of his actions—this is his chance to show he is more than a seat warmer.

As one of the 31 House members who supported civil unions, I encourage Aiona’s support. It would send the message to Hawaii that its top government officials understand the difference between civil unions and traditional marriage, and that we have enough safeguards in our State Constitution to protect the sanctity of marriage.


Tom Brower
State Representative
Waikiki, Ala Moana, Kakaako

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24 Comments on “Will Aiona veto HB 444 (II)?”

  1. charles Says:

    Plato is turning over in his grave.

    Not to mention, no lt. governor is going to freelance while the governor is out of town. If Aiona did anything it would be with the full understanding and agreement of Lingle.

    It rarely happens even in those states where both are from different political parties.

  2. Hawaiino Says:

    The conflicted self-loathing of a closeted individual?
    Too obvious. (Larry Craig, Mark Foley, etc, etc.)

    Perhaps this Aiona situation is so “ripe” it might have other politicians like Brower giddy with anticipation, addled by the tension, the Queen is almost gone.

    Or maybe he got kicked by a mule and is still sorting things out.

  3. WooWoo Says:

    I’m sure it sounded very clever in Brower’s head while he was concocting it. It looks like a convoluted attempt to accuse Aiona of being both a homophobe for not supporting civil unions and a wimp for not vetoing the bill.

    The only thing that could be dumber than this is if Aiona took the bait and actually responded to this… uh-oh…

  4. David Shapiro Says:

    I’ve always thought the lieutenant governor should be the losing party’s candidate in the general election. That would cut down on a lot of gubernatorial travel.

  5. WooWoo Says:


    If you want to eliminate out-of-state gubernatorial travel completely, just make Rod Tam LG.

  6. zzzzzz Says:

    @Charles, perhaps you’re correct about LGs not freelancing in Hawai’i, but that brought up memories of Mike Curb.

    Since the legislature hasn’t been notified yet of the possibility of a veto of HB444, would a veto now be legal? For that matter, was the legislature notified about the possible veto of the bill Aiona just vetoed?

  7. Nikki Heat Says:

    Nice try by T-Brow to “Celtic Pride” b-ball coach Duke Aiona into pissing off L-Gov at this late stage, but gotta agree with WooWoo that the notion sounded better over shots at Cheers than in practice (but as Dave notes, Brower seems awfully conflicted about having to show REAL support — a floor vote– and rhetorical kudos for Civil Unions).

  8. WooWoo Says:


    I think the potential veto deadline hasn’t passed yet… I think its 3rd week of June or so. My unofficial understanding of it is that up until that date, the Gov can veto whatever she wants. The potential veto list is just to give the Lege a chance to prepare for the over-ride session if necessary.

  9. charles Says:

    It’s June 21st if I recall correctly.

  10. Hawaiino Says:

    Hmm, that day, the Solstice, tied to “the Ides”, longest of the year. Just means more time for pondering, temporizing, and probably (shout out, “Is Spiro in the house”?) pusillanimity.
    I don’t anticipate a strong statement either Ray by the Gov, and Duke will be measured by his silence.

  11. Wahine Warrior Says:

    That is truly hilarious. A man, who is a Catholic, who stood with the Mormon, Mufi Hanneman (fake Democrat extraordinaire…you know the one that made the homeless laws as if the homeless were some sub human species undeserving to even breathe much less have a shelter over them?) against civil unions, proudly, on a Sunday when both of them should have been in their prospective churches praying for their immortal souls.

    Both Mufie and Dukie are pandering to the religious right, both are against civil unions, both are against civil and equitable rights for the homeless, and those in public housing, in favour of cutting social services and don’t have a problem with sticking it to the poor as often as possible.

    Dukie has never had an independent thought in his life, and Mufie has forgotten completely where he came from.

    In the case if Duke, we are talking about a man who was inflamed at the idea of Duane “The Rock” Johnson coming here and making a movie, about Kamehameha, and portraying him as such, as a muscular 6 foot 4 tall man of polynesian heritage because Dukie said he wasn’t Hawaiian.

    No, he is Samoan. A polynesian. His mother is Samoan, and was living here, when she gave birth to him. His father is African American. Just as Kamehameha had Tahitian ancestry. And Tahitian wives. “Hawaiians” are a mixed blood people of many polynesian bloodlines. The fact that they didn’t want HIM to portray Kamehameha perhaps was the motivation? Who knows. Becasue of this, the major motion picture production was temprarily halted becasue of Duke Aionas idiotic statements. At any rate, here is a man who knows absolutely nothing about much.

    Muffie wants to be the king of the world, and I frankly for one will not vote for either of them. If Mufi Hanneman wins the Democratic primary, I am boycotting the vote. And i will encourage others to do so as well. I refuse to vote for some fake Democrat who has voted against every democratic party principle, pretend to be President Obamas friend, and cow tow to some unions for now for the vote. Hanneman will not support the Unions. As soon as he gets in he will begin to push against them. There is no difference that I can see between Mufie and Dukie.

    A vote for Duke, or Mufi is just another vote for Lingle and her Legacy of Lunacy. The outer islands will not support either candidate. The only ones that will support them living on neighbor islands are Oahu transplants and mainland recent arrivals and Marcos supporters from the Phillipines, traditionally very concservative and Republican party leaning.

    We are tired of Oahu ego-centristic rule over our lives. Outer islanders will not vote for an Oahu based polititian from either party.

  12. Kolea Says:

    If Brower posted this on his own blog, I would say he is just ruminating out loud. But I don’t see the point of him issuing a press release with such convoluted meanderings. I think WooWoo hit it on the head. Tom wants to have it both ways: attack Aiona if he were to veto it and call him a sissy if he doesn’t veto the bill while he has the chance.

    As we saw with Browers two earlier brushes with this bill, he himself doesn’t know if he is coming or going. Not only did he make that asinine accusation about the bill being passed in a “sneaky” way, but his comments to the Honolulu Weekly reporter about his role in the unrecorded voice vote early in the session also exposed a great deal of confusion.

    But, considering his district, I guess he’s a good match.

  13. Kolea Says:

    One more odd formulation in Brower’s statement. In the closing, he writes:

    “It would send the message … that we have enough safeguards in our State Constitution to protect the sanctity of marriage.”

    The man has allowed the fantastical chimeras of the religous right to crawl into his head. How does one define the “sanctity of marriage” so we can develop some “benchmarks,” some “metrics” for determining whether its sanctity is truly protected or if there is a potential breach which might allow it to be soiled?

    Exactly when did the state get into the “protecting sanctity” business?

    Maybe we can perform an incantation, an exorcism of sorts, to put a spiritual firewall around pure, innocent, “traditional marriage”?

    We must remain vigilant. The Gay cootie got plenty juju.

  14. Michael Says:

    The decision to veto is not Aiona’s but solely on lingle. she wants the fifteen minutes of fame let her fall out of grace on her own.

  15. Michael Says:

    Figure this out. lingle or any politician are never wrong. lingle does not make decisions on her own. she has lawyers. so she gets the glory while the lawyers sit in the shadows as puppet masters. Any blame lingle can blame lawyers. she sits on a throne of iron pyrite.

    lawyers by the act of the devil are never wrong on what they do, since they make laws and find loopholes to get out of being wrong. no wonder they talk in circles? no wonder I thought lingle was a lawyer but is just a person who is sharp with her tongue.

    T-Rex had 2 brains, so does lingle. one in her head for body functions, the other brain, she sits on, manipulated by lawyers and supportive unions. no wonder she cannot bite the hand that feeds her. she is just a puppet as all politicians are.

  16. Hawaiino Says:

    In regards to your first coment, the point of this blog entry is whether Duke has the gumption to “take charge” while the Gov is traveling. Brower has, we think, called him out, albeit in a somewhat shambolic fashion. Legally it is not “solely hers”, if she leaves the State it becomes Dukes right as acting Gov to exercise the veto. If there is an agreement in place between them he has to make the decision to continue to honor it, with his decision to veto 2401 he raises himself into the publics view and, perhaps expectations in regards to 444.
    On your 2nd comment;
    A “throne of iron pyrite”….wow. Fools gold. Really?
    “T-Rex had 2 brains, so does lingle”….wow…wow. “(the 2nd) she sits on..” !!!

    I’ve spoken with the Gov a few times, she is a very assured, very articulate individual. She is invariable gracious yet she suffers no fools . Don’t spout some inanity or specious generalization to her, she will question your basis and your conclusion.
    This said, in my opinion, and to my regret, she has achieved little as Governor and I consider her tenure something of a failure. This does not take away from her formidible character. I believe it speaks more to the times and the situations she found herself in. It’s hard to wage wars without allies.

    I would advise you and shaftalley to avoid any correspondence with her. She is an ex-reporter/journalist. Besides demanding logic she is a stickler for proper grammer and punctuation.

  17. Michael Says:

    Hawaiiano: spoken like a true lingle supporter. I look forward to your commentary though it means little to me.

    You would advise me? As if I need your advise on what I can say or how I say it. I would not brag about what you know. If it were sound advise it would have been done, not just said. How I know?

  18. Michael Says:

    Hawaiiano, you want to reply but do so with the actual comment, not parts of it that suit your needs. Only makes a How I know you know sound so cheap as trying to make 2 cents in 2 bits.

    Too bad as a stickler for wrting she is not a politician. One can write in a fancy way or talk with big words. Remember big words are made of smaller words. logic to her is “shoddy”. defensive if wrong? she is manipulated. Who has their hand up your vent? a Puppet master.

  19. Ross Says:

    Rep Brower: could you please explain what you mean by protecting “the sanctity of marriage?” Since when is the state responsible for protecting the sancity of anything. Could you please clarify. What do you mean by sanctity?

  20. Michael Says:

    It seems the definition of sanctity has two meanings by Daniel Webster and Ross. Both different according to interpretation. I go by Daniel Websters meaning, which is written not voiced. One sees through one eye, misses the whole spector of things. Tunnel vision.

  21. Hawaiino Says:

    Daniel Webster was a noted orator, and he may be quoted using “sanctity”, but, I think you mean to refer to Noah Webster, the lexicographer.
    This, and the rest of your comments, are so obscure I hazard to respond to any of them. You may be an interesting conversationalist, a solid thinker, and even a sincere correspondent, but on the written page I can’t follow you.

  22. Michael Says:

    So obscure and yet there is a reply. Contrary Joe.
    On a written page who cares if you follow? You seem compelled to do so. How I know?

  23. Michael Says:

    Just checking to see How I know? It was not a mistake in my comment. Both names mentioned are talkers. Ha Ha, the joke is on you and How I know? It was planned.

  24. shaftalley Says:

    i think me and lingle would get on pretty good.i used to be a republican,before i became a RINO, but before that i was a democrat before i became a DINO.i was confused and then one day i saw things like i imagine you could see from the top of mt.everest on a clear day.

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