Long political campaigns getting even longer

I used to think Hawai‘i’s general election season was a bit too short — about six weeks from the primary election on the second to last Saturday of September to the general on the first Tuesday of November.

But this year’s campaign seems too long — way too long — even when you chop off a couple of weeks of having to pay attention by voting absentee.

In the 1st Congressional District race, Charles Djou and Colleen Hanabusa have been going at it since Neil Abercrombie announced he was stepping down way back in December, and with nothing new to say, they’re just saying it nastier.

In the governor’s race, the candidates have been sounding like Rain Man impersonators lately.

Everything Abercrombie says, James “Duke” Aiona accuses him of bringing Washington-style politics to Hawai‘i. Everything Aiona says, Abercrombie accuses him of not getting it done during the eight years of the Lingle-Aiona administration.

The absentee voting is part of the problem; candidates have to time their campaigns to peak when the first ballots are mailed, and they seem at a loss on what to do after that in a game of diminishing returns with fewer votes still up for grabs every day.

If this yearʻs campaign seemed long, wait until 2012, when Hawai‘i’s primary will be moved up to the second Saturday in August, making the general election campaign six weeks longer,  to comply with federal rules on mailing military and other overseas ballots.

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If you’re tired of the real thing, AARP is pitching  its votersʻ guide with a funny spoof on negative campaigning at jackphillipsforamerica.com.

***

Or for reading that is less light, my column in todayʻs Star-Advertiser, “Government needs to pay up to fix hot-water system now.”

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9 Comments on “Long political campaigns getting even longer”

  1. Bongo Says:

    If you experience an election lasting more than four hours seek help immediately.

  2. Michael Says:

    I have never seen so much hardened mud slinging that it seemed actual bricks have been flying.

  3. Dave Smith Says:

    Extremely righteous indignation on the column on the lack of hot water at Mayor Wright housing.

  4. Dave Smith Says:

    And the AARP website is a must-see for voters. It would be even more hilarious if it wasn’t so close to the truth.

  5. anticoqui Says:

    It may be protected under the 1st Amendment, but I think there should be a campaign clause that disallows ‘out-of-State’ monies and ads being used in Hawaii. Both sides have displayed “non-I approve this message” ads from their national political party ‘character assasination squads’; this has to be prevented in the future. Local candidates with local funding, and local issues to tackle. Pipe dream??

  6. WooWoo Says:

    Any thoghts on a unicameral legislature?

  7. Michael Says:

    1 or 2 humps?

  8. zzzzzz Says:

    @woowoo- A bicameral legislature tends to have more total members than a unicameral one. While more expensive to operate, this tends reduces the power wielded by any single legislator, which IMO is a good thing. It also makes it more difficult for the legislature to pass bad legislation, again, a good thing.

  9. Michael Says:

    Why hire more incompetant people then we already need? Tax payers complain about not enough money but we have money to pay for more incompetance. As if money grows on trees and comes out of a Magicians hat.
    I think one needs two lumps.


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