Hawaii County elections clerk Jamae Kawauchi has responded to the state Office of Election’s stinging Thursday report, which denounced her for shoddy leadership, failed communication and mismanaged preparation both on and before primary election day.
Unsurprisingly, she’s not happy with the investigation’s findings. State Elections Chief Scott Nago, she argues, is the one who failed to communicate, given that he didn’t even tell her he was conducting an investigation in the first place.
“This lack of communication on his part does not help to improve or address the significant issues that Hawaii County and the State Office of Elections obviously need to overcome to work together in partnership to run an election,” she wrote in a statement.
Kawauchi then goes on to say that Nago blowing Saturday’s delays way out of proportion.
“Yes there were errors that occurred on Primary Election Day,” she continued. “However this is not a perfect system, mistakes will be made and 100% accuracy should not be expected. Mr. Nago is being overly critical and he is failing to see that the big picture goal is to get through the elections.”
But, all that said, she indicated that she’d like to keep her job — at least until the general election: “I welcome any assistance that Mr. Nago can give me because I do want to do a good job in running the elections.”
— Alia Wong