To Hawaiian residents

Dear Editor,


In the effort to increase voter registration and participation among our Samoan community in Hawai’i, I kindly request that you publish this online and in your Letters to the Editor section of the Samoa Observer.


Hawai’i residents who seek to cast a ballot in the Aug. 13 Primary Election have until Jul. 14, 2016 to register. 

The Primary Election is set for Aug. 13 and the General Election is set for Nov. 8, 2016.

The deadline to register to vote in the Nov. 8 General Election is Oct. 10, 2016. 

Polls are open 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. both election days. 

“Voting is an essential part of our democratic process. By voting, you choose the representatives who will make decisions affecting you, your family and your community,” the State of Hawai’i Office of Elections states on its Web site. 

“If you care about the future of Hawaii register and VOTE!!”


In August of 2015, the Office of Elections and Offices of the City/County Clerks launched its online Voter Registration. 

“Open only to residents with a Hawaii Driver’s License or State ID, the service also allows voters to update their voter information and request a permanent absentee ballot,” the Office of Elections states in an Aug. 4, 2015 news release. 

“The online system was built to ensure that only persons providing verifiable identification are able to register online. All online submissions will go through the same verification process as paper applications.”

Residents who are not eligible to use the online system can still register to vote by a paper application and submitting it to their City/County Clerk’s Office, the news release notes.


Voters do not have to wait until Election Day to vote. There are two ways by which voters can cast a ballot before the election dates.

Any registered voter may request a mail ballot -- or cast their vote at an early walk-in location within their county. 

Voters may also walk-in to any early walk-in location in their county to cast their vote before Election Day. Early walk-in dates are as follows:

Primary Election: Aug. 1–11, 2016
General Election: Oct. 25–Nov. 5, 2016

To register to vote online, or to obtain a Voter Registration and Permanent Absentee Application, go to

For more information about registering to vote, visit the Office of Elections’ Web site or call (808) 453-VOTE.

Thank you and God bless.


Tina Mata’afa-Tufele

Samoan-American Journalist

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