Mahalo for voting Hawaii! The Aloha State doesn’t have to finish last for voter turnout this year. Get out there and vote! — CNN’s Change the List
Help us bring change to places and issues that need it most. This journalism experiment is led by CNN columnist John D. Sutter.
Lahaina, Hawaii (CNN) — Elle Cochran grew up far too enchanted by Maui’s rocky coastline andbeach-bum lifestyle to care a thing about politics and voting. “You get up, work, go to the beach, sleep — and do it again,” she said of life on this Hawaiian island, which, of course, is known for its surf. “It’s just this routine.” But after a real estate project was proposed on Honolua Bay — a cliff-lined cove near her home that’s known for its ruler-straight waves — she decided to do something that’s bizarre for a non-voter. She ran for county council. "I never voted until I ran for office," she said.
U.S. House candidate Kawika Crowley, from Hawaii, says he lives out of this van, which also serves as his campaign headquarters. I spent the afternoon with him today. He’s a Republican in a state dominated by Democrats. A greater diversity of political thought — Crowley is pro smoking in bars and anti same-sex marriage — would lead to increased voter participation in Hawaii, he said.