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Let’s Break the Habit of Legalized Bribery

August 19, 2014
Jeff Sims - Lahaina , Maui Weekly

I got the phrase "legalized bribery" from the book "End Legalized Bribery." It was written by the late Cecil L. Heftel, a businessman who served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1976 to 1986 for Hawai'i's First Congressional District.

I voted for Terez Amato because she's promised to not take these legal bribes from corporations or lobbyists. Representing citizens is different than taking money and creating a conflict of interest.

In contrast, our current state senator, Roz Baker, took Monsanto company money in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012. Yet, on June 17, Baker made a public statement that she had not taken money from Monsanto in a number of years.

She also took money from Monsanto registered lobbyists. It's all in the public record. For example, George A. Martin offered and she took money in 2007 ($500), 2008 ($1,000), 2010 ($1,000), 2011 ($1,000), 2012 ($1,000), 2013 ($1,000) and this year ($1,000). And she took money from Frederick J. Perlak and Carol K. Riemann. At another public forum, Baker denied that a Monsanto lobbyist had organized a fundraiser for her, yet the lobbyist's name was on the invitation.

Why has Baker repeatedly mislead the public? Does she think we are not going to call her on her deception? Why has she sold out?

Jeff Sims




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