Candidate info—What You Need to Understand about Voting in the 2018 Primaries

All Hawaii voters actually, but we are addressing this to our district and using our South Maui candidates as illustration

UPDATE 7/3/18. As we close in our upcoming July 17 forum for all seven State candidates, we expect most realize there will be no way to address all issue with all seven in this single meeting. So we urge all South Maui voters to take advantage of numerous media actions allowing candidates to explain positions, such as Akaku, Maui Community Media, Maui News and Maui Time. While the cover State wide candidates, today’s edition of on line Civil Beat, https://www.civilbeat.org/category/politics/     has Q & A for two S Maui Rep candidates. Check in out!

UPDATE 6/22/18  CLARITY NEEDED. When we said “our district” (above) we should explain we just meant the generic South Maui , & were not referring to voting districts. While a majority of this generic description is in the State Ledge’s House District 11, a part of North Kihei & Maalaea are in District 10, which often is misidentified as Lahaina.  Now we are not covering this in our forum, since while it does have three candidates, there is no primary race as each on the candidates is in a varied political party

6/21/2018 #kihei
To start, this has nothing to do with voting in the Maui County races for nine Council members and the mayor. Just be sure to vote for one in each. That is 10 decisions in the general election in November.

This missive only applies to the state and federal races.

Hawaii’s primary elections are often called “open,” as opposed to closed primaries where a voter must declare a political party to be able to vote with his or her chosen group. Such action is illegal in Hawaii. But open may be a misnomer, as there are restrictions by categories.

It seems obvious you cannot vote for more than one candidate for a single office. A Hawaii voter can’t vote for two guys for governor; you select one. Locally, our Senate District 6 has one elected senator, so you make your choice for the one you favor. But your selection for a specific office may affect for whom you can vote in another office in this Primary on August 11.

To simplify, let’s just look at the two contests that will be featured at the KCA July 17 forum – State Representative and Senator – and the seven candidates we have invited: four for Rep, three for Senate. We know you can only select two of the seven, BUT who you select in one race can affect who you can choose in the other – it is not wide open as you might expect.

NOTE: KCA does NOT endorse candidates. We are just throwing out some random examples.

If you vote for Tina (Democrat) or Don (Democrat) for State Representative in the Primary, you cannot vote for Mellissah (Green) for State Senator. If you vote for Mellissah (Green) for State Senator, you can’t vote for ANYONE for State Representative or US Congress (because there are no Green candidates there)! If you vote for Roz (Democrat) or Terez (Democrat) for Senate in the Primary, you can’t vote for Daniel (Nonpartisan) for Representative. If you vote for Daniel (Nonpartisan) for Representative, you can’t vote for anyone for State Senator or US Congress (because there are no Nonpartisan candidates there)!

So not very open. It is actually a Single Party Primary, and while technically “Nonpartisan” is not a party, it is treated as one by the State Office of Elections.

So in our forum, we have five declared Democrats, one Green and one Nonpartisan. Unlike the traditional “Chinese Restaurant Menu”, you can’t pick one from column A and one from column B. Like it or not that is how it works, and if you violate it your ENTIRE ballot is tossed.

If you are not sure, ASK before you mail in your ballot or go to the polls. We encountered a lot of confusion and misinformation, so we asked. Mahalo to the numerous entities who responded with factual and legal information

Too many guys do not participate. So do register and vote, AND do not allow your vote to be voided.

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2 Responses to “Candidate info—What You Need to Understand about Voting in the 2018 Primaries”

  1. This is very important information for voters to know and be aware of. Thank you for putting out there in a simple to understand format for all voters. Your vote matters, make sure it’s counted. #Huli2018

  2. Daniel Kanahele July 1, 2018 at 4:35 pm

    Mike Moran,

    Thank you for helping to explain the primary
    election single party voting procedure.
    Everyone can vote for county races. But, for state and federal races you must choose to vote for one party or non-partisan in all of those State and federal races.