Softcover, 224 pp.
For more than a half-century, Rick Tsujimura has been one of the true believers who work behind the scenes to get out the vote—the campaign staff and volunteers who canvass neighborhoods and stuff envelopes and hold signs at the side of the road, tirelessly supporting their candidates during election season. In Campaign Hawai‘i, Tsujimura shares stories of life on the campaign trail—the backroom strategizing, ethnic voting and mud-slinging, the exhilaration of victory and the disappointment of defeat on election night. It’s an inside view sharpened by Tsujimura’s long years spent toiling in the trenches for Jack Burns, George Ariyoshi, John Craven and Ben Cayetano, and running campaigns for Eileen Anderson, Arnold Morgado, Jeremy Harris, Randy Iwase, Neil Abercrombie and Kirk Caldwell. “I hope these stories bring some life to events that voters may have heard about, but whose details have faded with time,” the author says. “This book is not so much a historical account of events, but a record of the lessons learned during my years of exposure to the political process in Hawai‘i.” Campaign Hawai‘i is a primer for campaign workers and candidates alike, and a great read for anyone who follows politics, Hawaiian-style. “With equal measures of intelligence and humility, Tsujimura explicates both victories and defeats. Students of politics, take out your notebooks and sharpen your pencils.” —Dan Boylan, Emeritus Professor of History, University of Hawai‘i − West O‘ahu.