Could Hawaii’s 2nd District Go From Most Liberal to Most Conservative?

·By Adrienne LaFrance

Flickr: DonkeyHotey

About the Author

Civil Beat Staff

Adrienne LaFrance

Adrienne LaFrance is a reporter for Digital First Media and a Civil Beat contributor based in New York City and Washington, D.C. Adrienne focuses on Hawaii's congressional delegation and federal agencies that do business with the state. Before moving to Washington, Adrienne was Civil Beat's Honolulu reporter. Before that, she was a local news anchor for Hawaii Public Radio, Hawaii’s NPR affiliate, and served as managing editor of Honolulu Weekly. Adrienne also worked as a reporter for Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard University, and as a producer and news writer at WBUR, Boston's NPR affiliate. Her writing has appeared in The Washington Post and several other newspapers and magazines. Adrienne taught journalism at the University of Hawaii and was active on the board of the Society of Professional Journalists Hawaii Chapter. She earned her B.A. in journalism from Michigan State University and her M.S. in journalism from Boston University. You can follow Adrienne on twitter @AdrienneLaF.

Discussion

Which candidate's views best represent your own? Scroll down past the complete survey responses to join the conversation.

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1. Bob Marx's Complete Response

Do you agree with Kathleen Sebelius’ decision to overrule the FDA on allowing girls under 17 to purchase Plan B without a prescription? Why or why not?

"I agree with Kathleen Sebelius’ decisions to overrule the FDA on allowing the purchase of 'the morning after pill' without a prescription.


"A host of secondary effects are associated with the use of this drug. Seeing a physician and getting a prescription would allow review of the patient’s health history and medication history to avoid drug adverse interactions and worsening of medical conditions."


Would you support overturning Roe v. Wade?

"Roe v. Wade is a reasonable balancing of the interests and moral issues involved. I am
against re-opening that decision which has laid down the guidelines for government
regulation of abortions."


How do you characterize your position on abortion?

"Aborting a human fetus is a deeply serious issue best left to the couple and woman involved when it is early in the pregnancy. We need to strengthen the medical care given to young women so they can choose more freely whether to deliver their child at full term.


"I support providing proper prenatal care for young mothers and their child. We need to provide proper health care and insurance and support to allow a young family to raise their child in a healthy environment. I have supported national efforts to provide early childhood education, proper child care, pre-school and after school programs."


Do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to get legally married?

"The Constitutional Amendment passed in Hawaii decided this issue. Civil Unions providing the same civil rights to all couples is the best hope for eliminating discrimination of same sex couples in the law."


If not, do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to enter into civil unions?

"The Constitutional Amendment passed in Hawaii decided this issue. Civil Unions providing the same civil rights to all couples is the best hope for eliminating discrimination of same sex couples in the law"


Do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to adopt children?

"Yes, same sex couples should be able to adopt children on the same basis as other couples or singles. The question is: Will they make good parents?"


Should people who identify as LGBTQ be covered by federal anti-discrimination laws?

"Anti-discrimination laws should cover LGBTQ individuals as many other ethnic, racial,
religious or political minorities."


2. Mufi Hannemann's Complete Response

Do you agree with Kathleen Sebelius' decision to overrule the FDA on allowing girls under 17 to purchase Plan B without a prescription? Why or why not?

"I agree with the concerns expressed by President Obama and HHS Secretary Sebelius regarding the availability of Plan B to girls under 17. However, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for advancing public health by helping the public get accurate, science-based information they need to use medicines and foods to maintain and improve their health.


"In conformance with their mission statement, I believe the FDA is  allowed to make determinations regarding the availability of over-the-counter drugs based on adequate, reasonable, well-supported, and science-based evidence, without political interference. Thus while I concur with the sentiments of the Obama Administration, it is clear from the aforementioned argument that it is within the purview of the FDA to issue such a ruling.


"As a former Mayor with executive experience, I can sympathize with President Obama in this instance. There were times that I felt differently about a certain issue espoused by a Cabinet director and their department, but I yielded to that line agency with the mandated responsibilities and the requisite expertise on the matter, rather than selectively overruling their decisions."


Would you support overturning Roe v. Wade?

"Roe v. Wade is presently the law of the land and, as such, I am bound to uphold the law. Furthermore the law is clear that regulation of abortion should be left to the individual states, therefore any attempt to overturn should come from the states."


How do you characterize your position on abortion?

"While I am personally opposed to abortion, I believe that every woman should have the ability to utilize their free agency in exercising their right to choose. I would encourage any woman to consider all available options, such as adoption, prior to having an abortion."


Do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to get legally married?

"I do not support same-sex marriage as I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman. President Obama shares the same viewpoint."


If not, do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to enter into civil unions?

"Yes."


Do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to adopt children?

"Adoption agencies are charged with placing children in homes that will provide a safe, stable, nurturing, financially sound and supportive environment.  Children, above all else, need to feel love and affection. All things being equal, I believe a child should be placed in a relative's home, ideally with a man and a woman living in a traditional setting of a marriage.


"However, in the absence of identifying such a nurturing couple that is capable of providing such a loving environment, I would defer to the government agencies to find the best situation which would enable the child to be happy, thrive and prosper."


Should people who identify as LGBTQ be covered by federal anti-discrimination laws?

"Yes."


3. Esther Kia'aina's Complete Response

Do you agree with Kathleen Sebelius' decision to overrule the FDA on allowing girls under 17 to purchase Plan B without a prescription? Why or why not?

"I do not agree with her decision and recommend that the White House convene a meeting to include DHHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, FDA Administrator Margaret Hamburg and stakeholders to better explain the rationale behind this decision.  


"Because of the importance of this issue on young women across the country, it is imperative that this meeting be held soon."


Would you support overturning Roe v. Wade?

"No. I support Roe v. Wade and will do everything possible to preserve it and oppose measures which seeks to restrict a woman’s right to choose."


How do you characterize your position on abortion?

"I support a woman's right to choose and would want that right extended
to me personally in a potentially traumatizing situation.


"I also support federal and state funding of abortions for poor women. Regrettably, Congressional Republicans continue to restrict federal funds from being used for abortions through the Hyde amendment, which I would oppose."


Do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to get legally
married?


"Absolutely. I believe civil unions was a courageous first step taken by the Hawaii State Legislature and Governor Abercombie and that support of same-sex marriage has increased in Hawaii and around the country. Uniformity across the country is critical, so I also support a repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act at the federal level."


If not, do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to enter
into civil unions?
 

"Not applicable. See above answer."


Do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to adopt
children?
   
"Absolutely. I also oppose federal attempts by House Republicans to prohibit joint adoption by individuals unrelated by blood or marriage."


Should people who identify as LGBTQ be covered by federal
anti-discrimination laws?
 
"Absolutely. I support federal law which would protect people at the workplace from discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity and expression. I also support such protection under federal civil rights laws as well."


4. Rafael del Castillo's Complete Response

Do you agree with Kathleen Sebelius' decision to overrule the FDA on allowing girls under 17 to purchase Plan B without a prescription? Why or why not?

"It is no secret that I have strong differences with many of Secretary Sebelius' decisions since she took office (confirming my worst fears that she would not live up to her credentials). The DHHS position on the rights of patients to challenge insurance denials of coverage virtually ensured us of a multi-year, multi-billion dollar struggle for a level playing field.  


"Strong, consumer-oriented leadership by the Secretary, and that is job #1 for her office, would have saved countless lives and heartache, not to mention the time and efforts of hundreds of consumer rights organizations and tens of thousands of activists.  The decisions were made against the weight of the evidence and embarrassed the Administration before they even had time to go be implemented. 


"On Plan B, I say 'Here we go again!' Once again, Secretary Sebelius has plunged into controversy against the evidence and advice of probably the most cautious and deliberate food and drug agency in the world today. I am very distressed at the data on teenaged sexual activity, but the solution lies in our families and the institutions that serve our young people, not in regulations that deny them access to healthcare. Like so many of her decisions, the Plan B decision is at odds with the Administration's policy that access to healthcare in America is a right (for kids especially).


"Those who see this as President Obama's political decision are not looking at the facts or far enough down the road at the Secretary's personal political ambitions. To the President I say, this decision clearly demonstrates that it is time to rein in your appointee and insist on policies that benefit consumers first and foremost." 


Would you support overturning Roe v. Wade?

"No. Roe v. Wade is not perfect, but our society must become strong enough and resourceful enough that women do not need the protections of Roe v. Wade. In the meantime, Roe v. Wade will have to serve those who need its protections."


How do you characterize your position on abortion?

"I am opposed to abortion. I have never met anyone who was 'pro-abortion,' and have often said so in public fora. I always urge everyone who is legitimately involved in the debate to shun anyone who uses that term. 


"I am committed to eliminating abortions by eliminating the reasons women have to resort to them, and I ask all activists to restrict their involvement in the politics of abortion to supporting candidates who are serious about, and whose record demonstrates, commitment to addressing the causes instead of denying women, more poor than not, access to healthcare."


Do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to get legally married?

"Yes. Marriage is a social contract which we have, as a society, chosen to grant special status. I cannot and will not support any law that limits access to marriage or any other special status based upon gender."


If not, do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to enter into civil unions?

"For the time being, civil unions are a must, but even if they confer the same rights as a marriage contract, I am opposed to separate-but-equal schemes which are not embraced by all concerned."
 
Do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to adopt children?

"Yes. We devote considerable resources, rightly so, to protecting children from abuse, and requiring our courts to consider their interests paramount whenever a question is raised. There is no need for us to protect them from loving relationships."


Should people who identify as LGBTQ be covered by federal anti-discrimination laws?

"I cannot say that I would change the way that we are progressing in respecting and valuing our LGBTQ brothers and sisters, or that it needs any assistance from particularized anti-discrimination legislation. 


"It appears to me that our constitution and laws have proven flexible enough to deal with bad cases. DOMA, for example, is a Congressional bad joke, unconstitutional on its face. Would particularized federal anti-discrimination laws have prevented it? I strongly doubt it given what we have seen from our Congress. 


"On the other hand, the things the LGBTQ community's struggle have taught us about ourselves, our society, and democracy I consider precious, as I do the lessons prior struggles for equality in America that support the LGBTQ voices. While I admire other nations where the topic has not aroused passions, I am fiercely proud of, and grateful for, the LGBTQ struggle. 


"It has given us more heroes for fairness and equality, persons of extraordinary courage in every corner of our society. Our experience of them, and our response, assures me that we still tirelessly examine ourselves in our quest for a perfect democracy, and also that it is safer to protest and express strong beliefs and feelings in America than almost anywhere else in the world."


5. Tulsi Gabbard's Complete Response

Do you agree with Kathleen Sebelius' decision to overrule the FDA on allowing girls under 17 to purchase Plan B without a prescription? Why or why not?

"No. As I’ve said on my website, I’m totally focused on policies that help prevent unwanted pregnancies."


Would you support overturning Roe v. Wade?

"No. For more information on my position on choice, you can visit my website." 


How do you characterize your position on abortion?

"I’m committed to preserving a woman's right to choose. You can visit my website to learn more about my views."


Do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to get legally married?

(No response provided, see response to next question)


If not, do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to enter into civil unions?

"I believe government has no business in our bedrooms, and should ideally get out of the marriage business altogether. Getting government completely out of the marriage business is the best way to ensure equal rights for everyone involved in personal loving relationships. I support equal rights for all couples regardless of their sexual orientation.  Same-sex couples should be afforded all benefits, privileges, and rights that the government grants to heterosexual couples. I favor leveling the playing field for all people. 


"Government resources and energy should be focused on improving our economy, creating good jobs, providing our children with a good education, and making sure our seniors receive the benefits they worked hard for and deserve - not spent policing our bedrooms and personal lives. 


"The real meaning of marriage is a bond of love that ties the hearts of two people together. We all know that real marriage has nothing to do with a government-issued license. Why should we—as citizens of the greatest democracy in the world—give politicians, bureaucrats, and judges power over our most intimate loving relationships?


"We have allowed government to become ensconced as a kind of state church with the power to define what marriage is or isn't and to give or withhold its 'blessings' to personal loving relationships. We have allowed the government to act as the arbiter of personal morality and the politicians and bureaucrats to behave as high priests.  
A government that functions as an arbiter or enforcer of 'morality' suffocates people’s personal freedom. I personally experienced this during my two deployments to the Middle East with the Army National Guard.


"When government is no longer involved in marriage, it will no longer be in a position to grant certain benefits, privileges, or rights to some people while denying those benefits, privileges, and rights to others based on what forms of marriage government officials deem valid.


"This, I believe, is the ideal solution to assure that everyone can enjoy equal rights. However, until this ideal solution is achieved, I would work for the repeal of DOMA at the federal level and would support civil unions at the state level as interim measures.


"Although it remains to be seen whether the majority of Hawai'i’s people agree with my view on these issues, I must follow my conscience and do what I believe is right. You can visit my website to learn more about my views."


Do you believe that same-sex couples should be able to adopt children?

"Yes."


Should people who identify as LGBTQ be covered by federal anti-discrimination laws?

"Yes."