“I am a big supporter of Jerry Coffee. I think he is a terrific candidate and will make it a very exciting race.”
What she didn’t say:
It certainly is ironic that Akaka Bill-fan Lingle just loves Jerry Coffee, a 72-year-old Midweek columnist and former Vietnam War POW who has long denounced Akaka’s Native Hawaiian Recognition Act as “race-based and unconstitutional.” While it’s entirely possible that Coffee’s correct, his opposition to the bill—and Native Hawaiian activism in general—can be quite vicious. In a May 3, 2006 Midweek column, Coffee referenced unnamed “Hawaiian activists who denounce anything ‘American’ (except for the U.S. government handouts) and would rather live “sovereign” in the dark ages of tribalism… as provided by the Akaka Bill.” Sounds like a future senator to me!