Primary election winner is ‘blank’?

While we see voter participation “progress” on Aug. 11 as more registered Maui voters did vote this time, — going from very, very poor to just very poor? — we’re more baffled at those registered to vote who do vote, but leave so many blanks.

We expect guys who do vote in the County Council contests are aware that everyone gets (in theory) equal representation from all council members, regardless of where in the county they reside. We need a majority of council votes to go forward with any action, so only helping to select the member who lives in our area is counterproductive. She cannot do it alone.

But look at the results in these four primary races. The actual runner-up in West Maui is blank, as only Tamara Paltin secured more than the 7,415 blank votes! Molokai’s 7,087 blanks could easily have changed the outcome there, and the other two races with over 5,000 blanks could have done the same.

So who are these active registered voters behind the blanks, and why did they choose this inactive path? Are there still that many who are unaware of the process? Is this a conscious action by guys who did not like anyone in these races? Are there that many single-race voters who purposely choose to ignore these very important contests? Something else?

We’re sure we are not the only ones wondering who and why, as well as if there is some way to improve this outcome in November.

Mike Moran, President

Kihei Community Association