State House candidates weigh in on same-sex marriage

State House candidates weigh in on same-sex marriage

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Seven months after lawmakers passed same sex marriage in a special session, we could see a second showdown at the polls.

Outside heated hearings on the issue last November, opponents chanted "let the people vote, let the people vote."

Kapolei-Makakilo House Democrat Sharon Har took a stand against same sex marriage after hearing testimony from 5-thousand opponents. "They were very pleased with the fact that I stood up for the people" says Har. "Same sex marriage the way it was passed via special session really brought to light people's worst fears and perceptions about government."

GLBT Caucus Democratic Party Representative Michael Golojuch is running against Har. He says some people may use the issue as "political ammunition," but adds "Marriage equality shouldn't be an issue. If anything it should be seen as a bonus if somebody supported it because it brought in 92 thousand just in marriage licenses alone."

Also on the District 42 ticket, Nicole Ferguson. She won't run on the issue, but says her priority issue is renewable energy. Ferguson says, "lawmakers passed a good law in November. I support it and it's time to move forward and look at other issues."

But are opponents who vowed paypack going to get past the same sex marriage issue?

In November opponent Julia Masainai told us, "Our voice is not being heard. And now we know who to elect next year."

Veteran Kailua-Kaneohe Representative Republican Cynthia Thielen does not believe her support will turn off voters.

"Equal rights and liberty for everyone" said Thielen.  "They're not a single issue community at all. They care so much about what's going on in their lives. What's going to help them. How are their kids going to get jobs and be able to stay in Hawaii?"

With supporters chanting, "Let your voice be heard," Pastor Joan Hood explained why she's running against Thielen for the District 50 seat. "It's not about the same sex marriage. It's about not letting people to vote on it."

Hood added, "It matters to them. That's why they showed up. I believe they've woken up and are ready to let their voices be heard."

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