Where there’s Gabbards, there’s drama
My e-mail inbox in recent days has been inundated with complaints about Sen. Mike Gabbard and his daughter Tulsi Gabbard Tamayo, a candidate in City Council District 6, using a nonprofit organization they created to advance their politics.
The tax-exempt organization Stand Up For America was formed by the Gabbards after 9/11 to promote patriotism, but Tulsi Gabbard Tamayo’s opponents are up in arms that the SUFA website contained an announcement of her council candidacy and a link to her campaign website (since removed).
Former attorney general Michael Lilly, who chairs the campaign of Bob Vieira, one of nine other candidates competing for the seat currently held by Rod Tam, says electioneering by a nonprofit is strictly prohibited by federal tax law and he’s notified the IRS.
Hawaii Citizens for the Separation of State and Church, a longtime adversary of the Gabbards, has also entered the fray by filing a tax complaint.
Tulsi Gabbard Tamayo, a former state legislator, dismissed it all as an “honest mistake” and blamed a volunteer.
Susan Essoyan did a thorough story in the Star-Advertiser and I don’t need to reinvent the wheel, but I continue to be amazed by the passions aroused by all things Gabbard.
The crowded council race with several credible candidates will be an interesting test of whether the name is a plus or a minus.