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Feb 8, 2012

The public option

A political candidate who can campaign without depending on special interests is better for our democracy


Jul 13, 2010


June 26, 2010

Advocates for publicly financed elections say the approach helps remove the corrupting influence of money from political campaigns.

Money for the program comes from the $4.5 million Hawaii Election Campaign Fund, which is financed by taxpayers who check a box on their income tax forms to donate $3.

Jan 25, 2010

The U.S. Supreme Court decision opening a floodgate of corporate and union spending to influence U.S. elections immediately inspired a backlash in the form of rising support for public campaign financing.

The day after the high court's 5-4 ruling recast the political landscape ahead of the 2010 midterm elections, dozens of current and former corporate executives sent a letter to members of Congress through the good-government coalition Fair Elections Now urging them to approve public financing for House and Senate campaigns.

Sep 18, 2009

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September 16, 2009
Fair Elections Now Act deserves support

Next year, the Big Island County Council elections will conduct a first for Hawai'i: a publicly funded election. It's a concept that has grown increasingly popular in recent years, and with good reason. It gives candidates who aren't beholden to well-monied special interests a fighting chance to compete for public office.

Aug 13, 2009

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2010 will be here before you know it

Publicly funded elections still on track
by Erin Miller
West Hawaii Today
Thursday, August 13, 2009 8:55 AM HST

Hawaii County voters may think it is a little early to start talking about the 2010 election, but for County Council candidates considering a public funding option, now is the time, a community organizer says.

Jun 25, 2009
HILO, Hawai'i — Hawai'i's first publicly funded elections will be tested on the Big Island next year.
Jun 24, 2009

Candidates would be granted money based on a formula that considers the average amount spent by winning candidates in the last two County Council elections, minus 10 percent. Candidates wouldn't be allowed to accept any outside money.

The public funding program is capped at $300,000 for all races combined. There is about $5.5 million in the Hawaii Election Campaign Fund.

Jun 23, 2009
A full public funding option for elections, which would give candidates the choice either to run their campaigns with private money or to attempt to qualify for full public funding, is the deal of the century. Yet when it comes to the idea of a comprehensive public funding option, also known as "fair elections" or "clean elections," there are several popular misguided arguments for waiting to implement this important reform.
Mar 11, 2008
This is a prudent idea for what is essentially a test case. There is enough money in the Hawai'i Election Campaign Fund to cover the council race, making this a perfect year to pass the enabling legislation. Hawai'i Island and state election officials would have two years to prepare.
Feb 26, 2008
The legislation would use the Big Island's County Council vote in 2010 as a test case
Feb 26, 2008
Nancy Cook Lauer, West Hawaii Today
February 26, 2008
"A group advocating full public funding of elections has launched an e-mail and media campaign asking lawmakers to pass a bill allowing Hawaii County Council races to serve as a pilot project.