Why does Hawaii oppose Jessica's Law?

Hawaii state Senator Sam Slom weighs in


This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," March 14, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

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BILL O'REILLY: Now for the "Top Story" tonight. Let's go to Honolulu where there is exactly one, one Republican state senator in the entire Hawaiian legislature. Hawaii refuses to pass Jessica's law and it is perhaps the most liberal state in the union.

Joining us, Senator Sam Slom. Senator, do you know why the left in your state opposes Jessica's law?

SAM SLOM (R), HAWAII, STATE SENATOR: Well, aloha, Bill. The only thing I can tell you is basically what they say. And I think it's a case of misplaced compassion, compassion for perpetrators and there's also an underlying cultural problem here where some of our diverse cultures actually don't see any problem or any crime in having sexual relations with young children.

O'REILLY: Now, you introduced the law a couple of times I mean, you even introduced a watered down law right?

SLOM: Yes that's correct.

O'REILLY: Six years mandatory?

SLOM: Well, I didn't -- no, I didn't introduce that law. I tried, being the only Republican as you mentioned, out of 25 state senators. I sit on every one of our state senate committees, there are 16 of them, including the judiciary committee. And early in the session which began in January, I asked our chairman if he would hear the bill. He said he would think about it. I asked him again he didn't hear it.

O'REILLY: This is Jessica's law now, this is Jessica's law bill, right?

SLOM: It's my bill, which is exactly modeled after Jessica's law. Instead, a bill came forth that was supported by the local prosecutors and by the judiciary chairman and that bill made sexual offenses a minimum of six years, eight months; but it only applies to offenses against children 11 years of age and under.

O'REILLY: So Hawaii's pretty much a free fire zone for pedophiles and violence of -- it's a free fire zone there?

SLOM: Look, look unlike my -- my friend Congresswoman Hanabusa who you had on before.


SLOM: I watch your program and I appreciate everything you've done. Look, I love Hawaii, we're a great state and we have great people, but we have a dirty little secret. And that is ironically the Hawaiian word that we use for the children is Keiki, k-e-i-k-I and everything we do in the legislature is for the Keiki. When we raise our salaries it's for the Keiki. When we exempt ourselves from ethics laws it's for the Keiki. And when we have bureaucratic laws that don't protect children, it's for the Keiki.

So you would think that with all of the discussion about how we care about our children we would protect them and yet the secret is that we don't do that and people really don't talk about it. It's not an issue for discussion.

So when I tried on the senate floor a couple of weeks ago to amend the bill that was still alive to actually put in the -- the minimum mandatory 25 years to life, boy, I was met with a firestorm of opposition on the floor. And my Democratic colleagues spoke against it and they had really tremendous arguments.

One said, what about if a mentally-ill child rapes another child. Another one said what about the poor developmentally, you know, children that have problems there? But the best comment came from one of the senators who said, suppose a 11-year-old is in love with a ten-year-old and sex occurs?

And I tried to refute this bill by saying, first of all, who speaks for the victim. Everybody is talking about the perpetrator and you're right in your comments about restorative justice. We had a justice re- information and reinvention initiative last year, and the whole emphasis is trying to rehabilitate these people.


SLOM: I want to take care of our children, it's not being done.

O'REILLY: Well it's a disgrace and you know this con about children with children, all of these laws say it's got to be over a certain age, it's an adult and a child and they still won't do it. And I've got to run, Senator and I'm going to have you back because you're very good.

But I understand that that laws against harming pets are more important in Hawaii than they are harming children. And we'll get into it --

SLOM: You want to -- you want a big crowd, have a dog cruelty bill. They'll get hundreds of people down to the capital. Thank you, Bill.

O'REILLY: All right Senator. Thanks very much.

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