Friday, April 30, 1999

Bronster's ouster:

Outrage resonates
in the aftermath

Bishop Estate probe to continue

Political fallout


The Star-Bulletin received hundreds of calls in response to the question: What do you think about the Senate's rejection of Margery Bronster as attorney general? Here are some:

Bullet Mark Cricchio, Hawaii Kai: "I think the rejection of Margery Bronster as attorney general is a disgrace to Hawaii, and I think we have probably one of the most corrupt Senates in the nation and they just snub it in the people's faces."

Bullet Nell Altizer, Kaneohe: "Margery Bronster's success in bringing to national attention the corruption of the Bishop Estate deserves reconfirmation by the Senate."

Bullet Doug Flood, Kaneohe: "I hope the investigation into Marshall Ige continues ... he represents my district ... I'll work for whoever runs against him in the next election. It's criminal what the Senate did."

Bullet Steen Rasmussen, Waikele: "I am really, really disgusted about the rejection of the attorney general. I think it's the biggest corruption we have ever seen in Hawaii. I think a lot of the senators are (in with) Bishop Estate on the Kamehameha deal and I think that's why they were afraid of giving her a second term. It's really disgusting, and I think it's the biggest corruption we have ever seen in Hawaii."

Bullet Ron Jervis, McCully: "I think what the Senate did yesterday was honest and sincere, and basically what happened was the governor told the attorney general to jump. She jumped pretty high and that's pretty much where she landed."

Bullet Jeff Tilley, Kailua: "I think it's an absolute disgrace that every time this state attempts to take a step forward it takes five steps backward, and we are destined for ruin."

Bullet John Kato, McCully: "I don't like the decision that was made by the Senate as far as rejecting Bronster's ... reappointment as attorney general. I think that she's doing a reasonable job as far as some of the big-ticket issues, though I understand how senators can be upset with the wishes of some of the small-ticket issues as well."

Bullet Jack Sayles, Punchbowl: "Subject Banzai Anzai & Monster Bronster. ... No, the message header isn't disparaging. I like the two. What (who) needs disparaging is that miserable collection of bird-brained, self-centered, spineless, lily-livered, arrogant, fawning, underworked and overpaid, disgusting, self-aggrandizing, weasels who call themselves legislators who voted to oust Bronster and Anzai.

"If there was even a display of the depths to which politicians can sink, this is certainly the nadir for Hawaii. Reasons for my comments in support of:

"Re: Anzai - I've worked for DAGS for eight years and know something about the budget.

"Re: Bronster - the reason is plain as the oversized nose ... on some legislators' faces. She had the balls to go after Bishop Estate, balls that those eunuchs in the Legislature lack by not even being able to set a reasonable limit on those obscene salaries the trustees get - $250,000 a year is PLENTY!"

Bullet Ken Ray, Alewa Heights: "I believe that the Senate has basically fouled itself. Up to this point, all they've been is seat warmers. This is the only thing they're going to be remembered for - for the year, and I think this might be the absolute turning point of the old-boy network - the corruption and the reward system that has existed for far too long here in Hawaii."

Bullet Francis Souza, Aiea: "I think it was wrong for Margery Bronster to get ousted, and I hope that the guys who voted against her if they're going to vote for another attorney general, they better vote for somebody who can walk on water because I don't think there's anybody that could be as good as Margery Bronster, and I feel that maybe these guys were paid off by the Bishop Estate trustees because of her intense investigation of them."

Bullet Joseph Gonzales, Kapiolani: "I think it's very disgraceful the way these self-serving, boot-licking senators, the same senators that completely do the same thing over and over again as far as disregarding the public's opinion. I think that they should be booted out, especially the one in my district which is Carol Fukunaga."

Bullet Denise Carpenter, Kahuku: "I think the Senate's rejection of Margery Bronster is a travesty. She is one of the few females that I looked up to and felt that she was doing an excellent job and had more guts than anyone else in the state government right now."

Bullet Holly Bush, Hawaii Kai: "I am totally outraged about the voting results about Margery Bronster. I thought there was a glimmer of hope and light coming to this state and now I see that cronyism is back in place again. It's in force, and I'm outraged. I am pleased that Sam Slom voted for her, but I am very unhappy that he had reservations. I don't think anybody in this state listened to the constituents, but they listened to Henry Peters, and they listened to Dickie Wong."

Bullet Michael Thomas, Kailua: "I think it's a crying shame that the senators couldn't see beyond their own self-interest and reconfirm Margery Bronster. Finally we have an attorney general worthy of that title, one who has respect of the people and one who has never been afraid of doing what she thought was in the best interest of the people, and the people will remember it the next time elections come around. I think it's a crying shame they couldn't think of the people instead of themselves."

Bullet Jim Danz, Kaneohe: "I feel that what they did to Margery Bronster is about as low as it gets here in Hawaii. We're quickly going down the toilet, and it also shows just about how much influence Richard Wong and Peters and those guys have. They've obviously called in their markers from their buddies in the Senate and have managed to wiggle their way out of another situation."

Bullet Ralph Shimabuku, Kapahulu-Diamond Head: "The Senate is nothing but donkeys or asses."

Bullet Darrell Mayeda, Ewa Beach: "I think the Senate has done the people of Hawaii a grave disappointment in rejecting the nomination of Margery Bronster as attorney general. Despite claims to the contrary, I find the reasons for rejection to be dubious at best. I know that Brian Kanno should forget about running for re-election next year because I know of at least three votes that he WON'T be getting. He should concentrate on finding a job instead."

Bullet Bob Heidrich, Aiea: "The smell from Hawaii's Democratic politics is worse than Chicago or Boston ever was. I cry for the Hawaiians, Kam school students and all of us taxpaying citizens who suffer these 14 people in the Senate."

Bullet Clayton Kua, Hilo: "Corruption runs deep in the Senate well. It's disgusting, absolutely disgusting. Cite their petty, feeble reasons for her dismissal and doing the inexcusable seems to be the only thing these mindless imbeciles can do. The hands of Wong and Peters stretch far into the political arena and fueled by the disdain for a governor which some of these psuedo-senators possess, we have lost the services of a true leader. It stinks and it continues to stink. My senator lost one vote. I'm Hawaiian and the one person who stood between me and the cleanup of Bishop Estate was Bronster. Fortunately, no one stands between me and the voting booth. Some people have short memories - I'm not one of them. My wife says Peter Carlisle would be a great replacement - I agree. Alas, if only it could be."

Bullet Joyce Nunokawa, Hawaii Kai: "I think the negative vote, not to reappoint, was appalling. Bronster has been working extremely hard for things that have needed doing for years, and this is her reward? Hawaii is the poorer for it. She must have very powerful enemies, to allow this to happen. I will not forget these senators who have done her in. I speak as a lifelong Democrat."

Bullet David Martin, Kaneohe: "The Senate's failure to confirm these two extremely hard-working public servants is a disgrace and a testament to the fact that cronyism is alive and well in Hawaii politics. It is truly revolting that these senators would vote to oust an attorney general that was doing an extremely good job at trying to restore order to Bishop Estate. If these distinguished politicians think that the voters of Hawaii will not remember how they voted on this issue, they will have a very unpleasant surprise after the next election."

Bullet David Tobita, Mililani: "I think the rejection of Bronster is disgusting and proves that ... many of the senators do not listen to their constituents. Senate President Mizuguchi was not the most blatant violator of the public trust by not only changing his support in the last days but also for going against his committee's recommendations. All the concerns raised by the senators were responded to appropriately by Bronster but her rebuttals fell on deaf ears. With this kind of treatment, what qualified individual would be foolish enough to expect an appointment from Cayetano?"

Bullet Gerhard Hamm, Hawaii Kai: "A truly sad day for our state. The only really shining light in our government got extinguished. What could have motivated 14 senators? It was surely not the welfare of the state. How many of them might be beholden to the Bishop Estate?"

Bullet Kathy Burk, Hawaii Kai: "I think that the Senate's rejection of Margery Bronster was one of the stupidest things I've ever seen happen. But it just goes to show that the Good-Old Boy Network in this state is alive and well. No wonder people hate living here. I've been here two years and I can't wait to get out of here."

Bullet William Jardine, Kamuela: "Margery Bronster was without a doubt the most courageous AG we have had in recent memory. The current political establishment almost lost control to Lingle. Is there any reason not to believe that Bronster would receive the brunt of their panicky reaction to Hawaii's looking to join the mainstream of American political life by selecting a vigorous two-party system, a healthy investigative press and a public employee sector that is the tail ... not the dog?"

Bullet Andrew Fox, Pearl City: "Our Legislature, particularly the Senate, can't get anything done. Now they have to hurt us as well. Another manifestation of the dark image our 'leaders' so richly deserve. What a bunch of petty fools. Truly a sad day for the state of Hawaii. This begs for our right to recall."

Bullet Janet Gillmar, Palolo Valley: "I am appalled at the gall of those senators with clear ties to either the Bishop Estate or the public workers union who blithely went ahead and voted to reject Bronster and Anzai, two exceptionally capable veterans of Cayetano's administration. 'It's integrity in the Senate, stupid' is what the public may say if people like Ige, Mizuguchi, Anderson and the others are put out of office next election time! It's a sad, and futile, gesture regarding the Bishop Estate, anyway, since the state (and IRS) investigation will proceed even if Margery Bronster is not there and the size of state government will still have to be reduced even if Earl Anzai is not there! Auwe!

Bullet Carl Foytik, Hilo: "The department of the attorney general is a mess, filled with incompetent deputies, appointed because their uncle was a Democrat. They give the agencies bad, politically based advice -- and then lose embarrassingly when they get to court. Bronster has done nothing to improve the department. ... Every senator that voted against Bronster's confirmation has many constituents. ... I, for one, appreciate my senator 'playing politics' to remedy matters. After all, that's his game, isn't it?"

Bullet Laurie Turner, Kapolei: "So much for the aloha spirit! Margery Bronster did the best she could in light of the staff and budget she was working with. The only way to make it in Hawaii is to shed your common sense, good judgment and conscience at the airport."

Bullet William and Pat Mowat, Hawaii Kai: "Ms. Bronster should have been confirmed. The senators that rejected her appear to be raiders who see the estate as a cash cow. Now that the state dollars are depleted, they see the Bishop Estate as their next target. Like Lindsey, Wong and Peters, the senators want to raid the Bishop Estate of its resources and they could care less about the Hawaiian children."

Bullet Paulette Haisen, Kalihi Valley: "I am so angry at the travesty that has unfolded before our eyes. Angry that under the cloak of half-truths of a job not well done by Bronster, the Senate chose to once again vote for self-interest and preservation rather than for the wishes of the electorate. Everybody knows that Bronster attacked her job with fearless courage and conviction. How many times must the public be screwed by the Good-Old Boy Network before something gets done? I say we each have the obligation to stand up and be counted at election time. Each senator that voted 'no' must be held accountable for their action at the polls."

Bullet Holly Turl, Kailua: "(I am) very disappointed the Senate did not confirm Margery Bronster. She has been an excellent and gutsy attorney general and deserved reconfirmation."

Bullet Paul Stevens, Molokai: "It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that the Hawaii Politburo (Democratic Party machine) ordered their stooges (Senate) to oust Bronster because they have no intention of giving up their golden goose (Bishop Estate trusteeships) which they have been bestowing on their Good-Ole Boys over the years."

Bullet Raymond Starbuck, Kaneohe: "Sickening: Henry Peters' arrogance personifies the Hawaiian political mess. His quoted 'clearly she was rated on her performance' will hopefully apply to those up for reelection next time up. If it does not, Hawaii will only get what it deserves."

Bullet Sydney Cockrell, Waianae: "I think it STINKS. It shows what influence that the Good Old Boy Network has. A lot of political debts must have been paid ... I for one will not FORGET next election; nor will other voters in my household."

Bullet Rich Stacey, Makiki: "The vote ... reminds us why people have such low opinions of politicians in general. A bright, capable, overachieving public servant gets fired by a bunch of political hacks who can barely muster a half-believable reason for their action. Amazing! (Marshall) Ige should be sanctioned for his conflict of interest. If nothing can happen sooner, the voters will remember this action."

Bullet Kimo Anderson, Waipahu: "The Senate's rejection of Margery Bronster was very demoralizing. For decades the people of Hawaii had been waiting for a no-nonsense person to really look into 'untouchable' issues. Bronster had the courage to take on Bishop Estate and the large oil companies. She was a 'doer' and was punished for it. One senator said (the) vote was a 'historical day.' I'll be sure to remember this 'historical day' come next election!"

Bullet Carol Holt, Manoa: "I was very disappointed that in this entire state of Hawaii they could prevent Margery Bronster from continuing her commendable performance as our attorney general."

Bullet Myrna Rosa, Kailua: "How dare they call themselves servants of the public? A pox on the naysayers ... they have brought much shame on Hawaii through their actions; and we, the people, have lost a most valuable ray of sunshine and hope."

Bullet Dottie Sunio, Pearl City: "I am outraged that the Senate voted the way they did. This woman has been the ONLY government employee willing to take a stand and do something about the inequities and abuses that are going on. I have tried ALL DAY to e-mail my senator and tell him -- we will remember his NO vote. The government server has been down. I'll bet it has been flooded. I would like the Star-Bulletin to print the names, phone numbers, e-mail addresses of all senators and how they voted. Help the public to get in contact with their respective senator."

Bullet Pua Tokumoto, San Jose, Calif.: "I think Margery Bronster should run for governor in 2002 on the Republican ticket!"

Bullet Marilyn Harris, Pearl City: "Margery Bronster has accomplished 100 times what the Senate has. Her few shortcomings (cited by those who voted against her) pale in comparison to the Senate's mediocrity. Apparently our senators cannot tolerate competence. The voters cannot tolerate incompetence."

Bullet Don Arakaki, Ewa Beach: "The reason for her ouster is pure and simple. Money and power = KSBE."

Bullet Charles Lamoureux, Manoa: "The 14 senators who voted against reconfirming Margery Bronster, the best AG Hawaii has had in its 40 years of statehood, have betrayed the voters of Hawaii. I urge those of you who live in their districts to make this vote a primary issue in their next election campaigns. Better yet, when the next 'Con-Con' is held, let's urge all delegates to support a constitutional amendment to make the attorney general's position an elective one, safe from the machinations of senatorial politics. The only drawback to this would be that we would never again be able to witness the low comedy of 14 senators going through unbelievably complicated, ridiculous and humorous mental and logical contortions in futile attempts to convince us that THEIR votes were votes of conscience, and of course had nothing to do with their unsavory relationships with either the Bishop Estate trustees or the HGEA leadership.

Bullet Joe Cushing, Kaneohe: "My wife and I campaigned vigorously for Bob Nakata and against Terrance Tom -- who was allied with Bishop Estate. So what? Nakata reportedly ignores his district and votes revenge for a friend who was mistreated by Bronster. They ignore the governor, they ignore the people, and one who is willing to stand up in Hawaii is ousted."

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