Picture voters as Charlie Brown and the Office of Elections as Lucy with the football as we "flASHback" on the week’s news that amused and confused:
» Hawaii voter registration for the Sept. 18 primary election hit a record high of 697,000, but the state Office of Elections is closing 97 out of 339 polling places. Election officials are advising confused voters to call 800-AINOKEA.
» Polls show Democrats Neil Abercrombie and Mufi Hannemann running neck and neck for governor as the campaign heads into the final weeks. The much shorter Abercrombie is suspending his weightlifting regimen to work on neck extension exercises.
» Voters say they’re undecided in the race for lieutenant governor at a rate 2.5 times higher than in the governor’s contest. When it comes to LG, they’re mostly undecided about why we need one.
» U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye urged his fellow Democrats to cut out the mudslinging. If they don’t clean it up, he’ll wash out their mouths with his coattails.
» Inouye, clearly standing on his feet while begging Gov. Linda Lingle to sign off on Oahu rail transit, declared, "I am on my knees, I am, really." With politicians, you’re never sure whether they’re speaking metaphorically or just lying.
» Lingle said she might leave the decision on rail to the next governor. What, the $150 million tab for her delayed income tax refunds isn’t enough of a housewarming gift?
» Councilman Ikaika Anderson’s resolution to limit political yard signs to 2 by 4 feet is running into resistance. Candidates say such a small amount of space would unfairly force them to choose between showing face or making "A."
» On the Valley Isle, Mayor Charmaine Tavares lectured critics that she’s not "the queen of Maui." She wasn’t being modest; she just didn’t want Molokai, Lanai and Kahoolawe to feel left out.
» Big Island Councilwoman Emily Naeole-Beason accused her estranged husband of a political smear after he fled to Alaska saying she beat him and took his Social Security check. I shudder to think where that falls on Dan Inouye’s "fine, fine line between ‘fair’ and ‘foul.’"
» Chief justice nominee Mark Recktenwald told state senators that the Hawaii Constitution provides greater rights than the U.S. Constitution. How would we ever get by without our right to life, liberty and the pursuit of futlessness?
And the quote of the week … from "Hawaii Five-0" casting agent Rachel Sutton in issuing a call for extras: "We definitely want to present Hawaii in the most realistic way, and the reality of Hawaii is all of these different looks of people." I thought we all looked like Mufi Hannemann.
David Shapiro can be reached at email@example.com or blog.volcanicash.net.