Colleen Hanabusa : Ethically Challenged

  • Colleen Hanabusa, while in the Hawaii state senate, worked to obtain a $75 million tax-credit program benefiting Ko Olina resort developer Jeffrey Stone, her friend and landlord and the person who sold her husband the condo in which she resided. She was not required by law to disclose the connections and doing so voluntarily "never occurred to me," she said. Note that in 1998, the state Attorney General's office brought, then dropped, theft and bribery charges against Stone. Read more...
  • Hanabusa's staffer had to resign after emails came to light indicating he was illegally coordinating with the drug manufacturers PAC, PhARMA. Read more...
  • CREW (Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington) castigated Colleen Hanabusa for loaning her campaign money at a high rate of interest.

    “With the interest rates Rep. Hanabusa is charging for loaning her own campaign money, she could be confused for a loan shark,” said CREW Executive Director Melanie Sloan.

    “Most Americans open a savings account when they want to earn a little interest on their money. Instead, Rep. Hanabusa is making a killing by investing in her own campaign.” Read more...
  • Hanabusa claims that the late Sen Daniel Inouye wanted Gov. Abercrombie to appoint her to his seat on his passing.  Apart from not realizing that senate seats are not subject to be handed down to friends or relatives, there were many questions about the supposed death-bed letter expressing Sen Inouye's wishes.

    Turns out the letter was written and robo-signed by Jennifer Sabas, the longtime chief of staff for the late U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye, who is now working for the Hanabusa campaign. Read more...
  • As a state senator, Colleen Hanabusa worked to prevent Attorney General Margery Bronster re-confirmed.  AG Bronster had made a name for herself taking courageous stands by suing the tobacco companies on behalf of the state and investigating the looting of Hawaii's biggest trust, the Bishop Estate by its corrupt trustees.

    According to Gov Ben Cayetano the Senate was being influenced by Bishop Estate and accused Hanabusa of opposing Bronster's confirmation because of her ties with estate trustee Henry Peters.

    "I think Sen. Hanabusa comes from an area where a trustee is a constituent of hers and I think you need to ask her if it makes a difference," he said. "She says it doesn't make a difference and I think the people can judge accordingly." 

    From page 432-433 of "Ben: A memoir from street kid to Governor":

    "...Hanabusa had other reasons to oppose Bronster's confirmation. (KSBE Trustee) Henry Peters and his influential mother, Hoaliku Drake, who had organized public demonstrations in opposition to Bronster's confirmation, were both supporters who lived in her district. Politically, that alone would have been reason enough for her to vote against (Bronster). but, as the Honolulu Advertiser would later disclose, Hanabusa had a close relationship with developer Jeff Stone, whose sister was married to Bishop Estate trustee Dickie Wong and who, along with Peters and Wong had been indicted by a grand jury convened by Bronster. As the attorney general's investigation would later reveal, prior to the confirmation hearing, Hanabusa had met privately with Larry Mehau and Wong. When confronted by a reporter, Hanabusa confirmed that the meeting had taken place, but, in a remarkable lapse of memory, she could not remember if Bronster's confirmation had been discussed."
    Read more here.