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Thursday, September 6, 2012
Fact Check: Mazie Scores 10 Misrepresentations in First Forum
By News Release @ 9:32 PM :: 7868 Views :: Energy, Environment



News Release from www.Lingle2012.com

HONOLULU - In the first of five scheduled forums and debates between Governor Linda Lingle and Mazie Hirono, candidates for Hawaii's open U.S. Senate seat, Hirono attempted to mislead the audience at the Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii with at least 10 statements that were factually inaccurate and patently false.

"Today's forum highlighted the clear choice presented in this important election. The voters of Hawaii learned again today that Linda Lingle has a clear understanding of the important issues facing our state, and has a proven record of accomplishment as an effective, independent leader. Conversely, Mazie Hirono provided an astonishing inability to comprehend the complex issues which challenge Hawaii and our country. Mazie Hirono’s statements – which included very few specific solutions – point out she is either grossly uninformed or she is purposefully misleading the public," said Campaign Manager Bob Lee.

Hirono's errors included the following 10 inaccuracies, misstatements and falsehoods.

1. Hirono said, “We cannot go it alone, this is an interconnected world. When President Bush led us into war in Iraq, it was basically a unilateral decision.”

FACT: No U.S. President can ‘go it alone’ in any war. According to Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution, the Congress has the enumerated power to declare war (1).

In 2002, the U.S. Congress authorized war in Iraq with 77% of the U.S. Senate voting yay and 68% of the U.S. House of Representatives (2). It was not a unilateral decision by President Bush.

Additionally, the United States of America had a large group of allies in the Iraq war. As of March 21, 2003, the allies included the following 31 countries: Afghanistan, Albania, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Colombia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, El Salvador, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Georgia, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, the Netherlands, Nicaragua, the Philippines, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom and Uzbekistan. (3)


(1) U.S. Constitution.net. http://www.usconstitution.net/xconst_A1Sec8.html

(2) Senate: http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=107&session=2&vote=00237; House: http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2007/roll757.xml

(3) The Coalition of the Willing, Ethics of Development, Jesse Lorenz. Available at:  http://www.stanford.edu/class/e297a/The%20Coalition%20of%20the%20Willing.htm     

2. Hirono said, “When my opponent said that she balanced the budget, it was thanks to $1.4 billion in federal recovery money...”

FACT: Hirono's claim that Governor Lingle balanced the Hawaii state budget with $1.4 billion in federal “ARRA” stimulus funds is simply not true. The magnitude of the Hawaii state budget revenue shortfall was $3 billion, and was the result of the most rapid decline in state budget revenues in Hawaii's history. (1)

Although the state was allocated $1.4 billion in ARRA funding, a significant portion of this funding was earmarked for specific purposes and could not be used by Hawaii or any other state to balance their budgets. At least half of this $1.4 billion allocation was funding earmarked directly to the counties or for "shovel-ready" projects in transportation and energy. This earmarked funding could not be used to balance states' budgets, as claimed by Mazie Hirono.

The Lingle administration was able to effectively apply the non-earmarked portions, including $320 million in Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP) and $157 million State Fiscal Stabilization funding, of the ARRA federal funds to supplement state general funding in education and social services. That amount did not cover Hawaii’s $3 billion budget shortfall. (2 & 3)


(1) Stimulating Hawaii's Economy: Impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, Hearing before the committee on appropriations, U.S. Senate (http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CHRG-111shrg52739/html/CHRG-111shrg52739.htm).

(2) Governor Lingle unveils plan to close revenue shortfall, March 4, 2009; Retrieved from: http://the.honoluluadvertiser.com/dailypix/2009/Mar/04/lingle.pdf

(3) Looking back, Looking Forward. http://thelingleyears.wordpress.com/education/

3. Hirono said “Don Young... and I got together to fight our own caucuses to save funding for Native Hawaiian and Alaskan education grants.”

FACT: Hirono has repeatedly referred to the “Hirono-Young Amendment.” The Amendment, according to the Congressional Record, was named the Young Amendment, not the Hirono-Young Amendment (1). Furthermore, Hirono voted against the very bill to which the Young Amendment was attached (2).

Congresswoman Hirono votes with her party 96% of the time. Her actions and her words do not reflect a collaborative leader who can work with others, whose views may differ from her views (3).


(1) http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2011/roll074.xml

(2) http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d112:HZ00060

(3) http://projects.washingtonpost.com/congress/members/H001042

4. Hirono said, “My opponent is the chair of the Romney-Ryan ticket.”

FACT: Governor Lingle joined other notable leaders in the Jewish American community – Democrats, Independents and Republicans alike – in being named as honorary chairman for the Jewish Americans for Romney Coalition. Governor Lingle is not co-chairing Governor Romney’s campaign. (1)


(1) Jewish Americans for Romney Coalition. August 1, 2012. http://www.mittromney.com/blogs/mitts-view/2012/08/jewish-americans-romney-coalition

5. Hirono said, “the sequestration is not the way to do it” when referring to the nation’s deficit and debt challenges.

FACT: Mazie Hirono stated her strategy for growing our nation’s economy included eliminating the “sequestration” (the automatic tax increases and budget cuts scheduled to be effective in January 2012).

The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, in its May 2012 “Economic Effects of Reducing the Fiscal Restraint That Is Scheduled to Occur in 2013” report to Congress, warned that eliminating the “sequestration” without imposing other comparable measures of fiscal restraint would reduce our nation’s output and income and lead to national debt levels that would be dangerous. (1)

Mazie Hirono needs to provide specifics on how she would reduce the additional deficit and debt that would result from eliminating the sequestration. Without a specific plan to tackle our mounting deficit and debt, Mazie Hirono would be endangering our economy and the well-being of Hawaii’s families.


(1) Congressional Budget Office, in its May 2012 “Economic Effects of Reducing the Fiscal Restraint That Is Scheduled to Occur in 2013, retrieved from http://www.cbo.gov/publication/43262

6. Hirono said, “If the Republicans take control of the U.S. Senate, Senator Inouye will lose his chairmanship.”

FACT: Whether Governor Lingle is elected or not, Republicans may gain a majority of the U.S. Senate, meaning Senator Inouye will lose his chairmanship of the Appropriations Committee. For decades, Senator Inouye and the late Republican Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska looked out for each other’s interests when one party or another was in the majority. Since Senator Stevens’ passing, Senator Inouye has had the advantage of sitting in the majority party.

If Hawaii’s delegation remains completely Democrat, then Hawaii does not have anyone in the majority party looking out for its interests. The fact is, it is in Hawaii’s best interest to have a “foot in both camps,” so that no matter which party is in control, Hawaii’s interests will be effectively advocated for in Washington, D.C. (1) While Senator Inoyue may not gavel the committee to order, he would still be the ranking member. This statement is pure shibai.


(1) Inouye-Stevens bond crossed party lines, Derrick DePledge, Honolulu Star-Advertiser (http://www.staradvertiser.com/news/20100811_Inouye-Stevens_bond_crossed_party_lines.html?id=100418444).

7. Hirono said “My opponent [said] there should be a special committee in the Senate to focus on tourism. There already is such a committee and the ranking member is Roy Blunt, someone I have worked with in the past and I look forward to working with again.”

FACT: There is no sub-committee in the U.S. Senate which is focused on tourism. There is a bipartisan Senate Tourism Caucus (1).

Mazie Hirono and her U.S. Senate campaign staff members have previously called U.S. Senator Roy Blunt a “right-wing extremist” (2).


(1) http://www.kirk.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=490

(2) Emails from Betsy Lin, campaign manager, March 6, 2012 and May 10, 2012. Also reported by Honolulu Civil Beat, http://hawaii.politics.government.blogs.civilbeat.com/post/18876570337/hirono-jabs-lingle-over-blunt-amendment  

8. Hirono said we should “end tax breaks for richest 2%” to solve the nation’s deficit and debt crisis.

FACT: According to the IRS, U.S. residents making $1 million or more annually had a total adjusted gross income of $240 billion in 2009. If government were to take these millionaires’ entire income – effectively taxing them at 100% – it would raise $240 billion a year. That would cover just 18.5% of the current $1.3 trillion deficit. (1)


(1) IRS, Statistics of Income Division, July 2011

9. Hirono said “It’s easy to wave your hand at Fannie Mae for our melt down, but the fact of the matter is that it was Wall Street and the excesses of Wall Street that led our country to the brink of economic chaos.”

FACT: In January 2009, the Congressional Research Service issued a report outlining the causes of the financial crisis. The report found that among the major causes of the financial crisis, was "Government-Mandated Subprime Lending": "Federal mandates to help low-income borrowers (e.g., the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac's affordable housing goals) forced banks to engage in imprudent mortgage lending." (1)

President Clinton has also called for tightening controls on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac stating, “responsibility the Democrats have may rest more in resisting any efforts by Republicans in the Congress or by me when I was President to put some standards and tighten up a little on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.” (2)


(1) Causes of the Financial Crisis, Congressional Research Service (2009) (http://assets.opencrs.com/rpts/R40173_20090129.pdf).

(2) ABC News interview with Chris Cuomo. Retrieved from http://newsbusters.org/blogs/noel-sheppard/2008/09/25/fox-news-blames-democrats-financial-crisis-bill-clinton-agrees#ixzz25ji4kcdR

10. Hirono said “I also have a bipartisan bill, called the VISIT USA bill... that is supported by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce...”

FACT: Mazie Hirono has constantly referred to her advocacy of visa waivers and her sponsorship of the VISIT USA Act, implying that it was an original idea she proposed. Fact is that on November 3, 2011, two weeks after Senators Schumer and Mike Lee first introduced the legislation in the U.S. Senate, Mazie Hirono copied the bill and introduced it in the U.S. House. Thus far, the bill is in committee and has resulted in no action.(1)

Despite Mazie Hirono’s touting of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s support for the VISIT USA bill, she has frequently called the nation’s largest organization of businesses a “right-wing mainland interest” (2).


(1) Library of Congress. http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/D?d112:1:./temp/~bdB5Kz::|/home/LegislativeData.php| Hirono is the sponsor; 10 House co-sponsors.

(2) U.S. Senate Campaign email from Mazie Hirono, June 25, 2012


Today’s forum will be aired on Olelo Community Television on September 13 at 8:30 p.m. (VIEW 54), September 16 at 10:30 a.m.(VIEW 54), September 19 at 4:30 p.m. (FOCUS 49) and September 30 at 8:00 a.m. (VIEW 54).

A complete video of the forum will also be available on LL12, channel 110 or LL12HD, channel 1110 on Oceanic Time-Warner Digital Cable.

Additional information on the Linda Lingle Senate campaign is available at www.Lingle2012.com. Follow the campaign on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Lingle2012, on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Lingle2012, and on YouTube at www.YouTube.com/Lingle2012.

# # # #


News Release from www.Lingle2012.com   

Governor Linda Lingle and Congresswoman Mazie Hirono, candidates for Hawaii’s open U.S. Senate seat, will face off in the first two-candidate forum of the General Election.

This is the first of only five forums and debates which Mazie Hirono has agreed to, all which will be held on Oahu. Recognizing that Hawaii’s next U.S. Senator will represent the entire state including the neighbor islands, Governor Lingle has agreed to over 20 debates and forums being held in all counties statewide.

Governor Linda Lingle
Congresswoman Mazie Hirono

Event hosts, including:
Honolulu Japanese Chamber of Commerce
Hawaii Association of Realtors
Hawaii Restaurant Association
Hawaii Society of Business Professionals
Hawaii Independent Insurance Agents Association
Land Use Research Foundation of Hawaii
Members of the general public who purchased tickets

Today, Thursday, September 6, from 11:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii
2454 South Beretania Street

# # # #



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