After “much soul searching” — and an absence of other job offers — Kauai County Councilman Gary Hooser has decided to honor us by seeking another term.
But there is a catch. We must send money. Now.
In an announcement made Sunday — yes, he and Hillary — Gary informs us that his campaign bank account is “literally at zero.” And, it seems, the solidity of his constituency is rather Jell-O-like:
“So I begin today rebuilding my political base and campaign infrastructure in order to ensure a successful election in 2016.”
Gary starts with a bit of backstory:
A few months ago I mentioned to a friend that this might be my last term in office. I have served for over 15 years and perhaps it was time for me to move on [yes!] and pursue other avenues of service, [except neither the governor nor Center for Food Safety offered a job], perhaps even travel the world [except that costs dough he doesn't have] and relax a little bit.
People often inquire as to what my plans are the future. Will I run for re-election to the Kauai County Council? Will I seek to return to the Hawaii State Senate [like he has a prayer of getting elected]? Will I retire from the political world and focus on my work with the Hawaii Alliance for Progressive Action [which he's been doing while collecting a county paycheck, 'cause there's no dough in HAPA]?
Faced with all those options, Gary has decided that “if the community support is there [don't bet on it], I will remain in office [what, you were thinking of leaving early?] and run again for re-election in 2016.”
Gary then takes hat in hand and tells us:
Those of you that follow elections know that it was by the slimmest of margins (82 votes) that I was successful in 2014. I take full responsibility for those results and blame only myself for not working harder at the grassroots level to stay connected with Kauai residents. [Because he thought he was so dang popular that all he had to do was appear on the ballot and the votes would come rolling in.] I will not make that mistake again.
If we give him another chance — and money — Gary promises us he'll be working on "keeping property taxes for homeowners from going up once again,” though he opted to testify at the state Lege rather than vote on his own tax bill at the Council. He'll also “push hard on near-term traffic solutions,” which are actually the kuleana of the state DOT, and “bring some sanity and reason to the B&B/HomeStay debacle now enveloping our county,” though it's unclear where he stands, and all the action thus far has come from the Administration.
And lest we think he's done meddling and fear-mongering, he reassures us:
I am a long way from being done dealing with issues surrounding the impacts of large agrochemical companies in our community.
Oh, joy. Never mind that his efforts thus far have divided and polarized the community, and heightened the anxiety of residents, while achieving no real results. As in nada.
But that's all somebody else's fault. Most recently, the big bad House Agriculture Committee, which refused to pass his flawed disclosure bill requiring only farmers to reveal every herbicide and pesticide applied.
In fact, Gary tells us on his blog that he is fed up with “industry” — because, just like him, “they lie, they mislead, they obfuscate and they manipulate the data” — and the Lege. So fed up that he's challenging “any member of the House of Representatives to debate the facts."
Surely at least one of you on the House Agricultural Committee feels strongly enough and knows the facts of the matter well enough to articulate your position to the public?
I am over it.
And Gary, we are so over you. But unlike you, we won't resort to such clever retorts as “bite me.” Instead, we'll just say, keep looking for another job.
Because you're gonna need it come 2016.