Ruggles ejected from council meeting after refusing to vote

  • Jen Ruggles

HILO — Puna Councilwoman Jen Ruggles was twice asked to leave council committee meetings Tuesday, after she abruptly announced she would not be voting because of her concerns over Native Hawaiian sovereignty and whether her votes constitute war crimes.

Ruggles, who formally leaves office in December after dropping her re-election bid in June, left Kona council chambers following tense exchanges with Corporation Counsel Joe Kamelamela and Hilo Councilman Aaron Chung.


Other council members seemed flustered by the unexpected departure from the agenda during a day that would have otherwise been taken up with routine matters. That business took a backseat several times, as Ruggles and Kamelamela debated over whether she had a right to participate in the meeting if she refused to vote.

After being excused early in the day, Ruggles returned two hours later, only to again be told she can’t sit at the dais as long as she refused to vote.

At issue for Ruggles is a letter Keanu Sai of the Kingdom of Hawaii sent to elected officials.

The letter included a Feb. 25 memorandum from an independent expert to the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights that characterized the Hawaiian Islands as a “sovereign nation-state in continuity; but a nation-state that is under a strange form of occupation by the United States resulting from an illegal military occupation and a fraudulent annexation.”

Ruggles said she subsequently did her own research, and has retained Honolulu attorney Stephen Laudig to help her determine whether her official council actions could make her criminally liable under international humanitarian law. Her office provided the media with a 394-page letter Laudig sent Kamelamela earlier Tuesday.

The councilwoman said she will refrain from voting or chairing committees until Kamelamela gives her a formal opinion she isn’t breaking international law.

“I am a firm believer in the rule of law and not the politics of power and I swore to support and defend the Constitution of the United States when I took this office, and I want to make sure I am not breaking those laws,” Ruggles said, reading from a statement.

She said her understanding is the Hague and Geneva Conventions are international treaties ratified by the United States.

In particular, Ruggles questioned whether she could participate in making laws, where the laws of the Hawaiian Kingdom must be administered and not the laws of the United States; whether she could collect taxes from protected persons where international law prohibited pillaging; whether she could be complicit in the foreclosures of properties of protected persons for delinquent property taxes where international law prohibits the confiscation of private property and whether she could be complicit in criminal prosecutions where protected persons are prohibited from being unlawfully confined and cannot be denied a fair and regular trial by a tribunal with competent jurisdiction.

“I would like to be clear that this action on my part should not be construed as a publicity stunt but rather upon the advice of counsel given the awareness I have gained regarding alleged war crimes,” she added.

Ruggles wanted to remain at her council seat and abstain from voting but was told council rules require her to vote.

Kamelamela said he hadn’t read the letter, but he’s familiar with arguments from what he termed “the alleged kingdom of Hawaii.”

He assured Ruggles she wouldn’t be violating international law or committing war crimes by voting. Not voting, however, is a disservice to her constituents, he said.

“When you abstain, you are not representing your district,” Kamelamela said. “It has to be something. Yes or no. … Your presence here is not going to move the body forward.”

Chung urged Ruggles to reconsider her position.

“We are part of the United States of America, a sub-unit thereof,” said Chung, an attorney. “If Ms. Ruggles is not going to reconsider … I’m going to object to her being here.”

Chung said he was “confused” and “perplexed” that Ruggles wanted to continue sitting in a body she’s claiming may be illegitimate.

“She ran for office under the laws of Hawaii. … She took an oath,” Chung said. “It all presupposes an adherence to the laws of the state of Hawaii and the United States of America.”

Kamelamela also wanted clarity.

“There seems to be an implication this whole body is illegitimate, which I disagree with,” Kamelamela added. “If you believe you can’t even act here, then one option is to just leave.”


The Native Hawaiian sovereignty movement and activists were buzzing with the news shortly after Ruggles sent out a press release and her comments played out over county live webcasts. Many took heart in the enunciation by an elected public official of their own long-held concerns.

“This is what bona fide due diligence looks like,” activist Suzy Case said in a Facebook post. “Every person serving in any government should question the motivations of every law, every single time … especially if there is a question of possible war crimes or crimes against humanity.”

  1. CongressWorksForUs August 22, 2018 12:27 am

    Aren’t we missing something here? Like a declaration of war or something?

    1. freedumb2003 August 22, 2018 3:12 am

      More like a drug test.

      1. chester August 22, 2018 4:39 am

        LOL, spot on!

  2. Redland Lee August 22, 2018 5:37 am

    Puna should be happy to get rid of this nimrod. Any crackpot with any conspiracy theory can send a letter to this crackpot and she will BELIEVE it??? Please Ruggles…..leave NOW. I expect the county to NOT PAY HER A DIME from yesterday on….until she decides to vote and perform her duties she swore to do. Keanu Said is a convicted FELON with radical views. They keep throwing war crime crap on the wall for many years…….hello…….nobody on the world stage believes that The Hague or others really believe their theory. What is happening is The Hague does not know how to handle or process frivolous “theories” as Sai presents, so technicalities on the process of eliminating their submissions is all that is happening…… is a wakeup call to all….most countries were absorbed or taken over by other countries by war, treaty etc. Trying to re write history is NOT going to happen. Ruggles shiould not be paid and should resign.

  3. Pest Outwest August 22, 2018 5:43 am

    The definition of a white social justice warrior. And a total fruitbar of course.

    1. Buds4All August 22, 2018 12:01 pm

      POWest…she is something I gave my GrandPa at XMas, a Fruit Cake.

    2. Sterling August 22, 2018 12:44 pm

      Someone must have called her racist so now she’s kissing some brown okole to prove she hates Whites just as much as brown people do. There’s nothing more pathetic than a self hating White.

  4. Big ideas August 22, 2018 5:54 am

    ” I swore to support and defend the Constitution of the United States when I took this office, and I want to make sure I am not breaking those laws…”

    By her own admission – END OF STORY!

    1. Susan Rosier August 22, 2018 8:58 am

      Treaties as defined in USA law are Superior to all laws of the nation who signed them! The USA is in violation of its 3 treaties with the Kingdom of the Hawaiian Islands and also the international laws they have to abide by because of their signing of the Treaties with the Hague and at the Geneva Convention.

      1. Big ideas August 22, 2018 9:53 am

        Kingdom of (so called) Hawaiians treaties were never voted on and approved by Congress.

      2. Buds4All August 22, 2018 12:00 pm

        Are you going to take our land away Susan and lock us up and feed us to your hogs? You Savage!

        1. sailboi October 31, 2018 5:38 pm

          A valid question !

      3. diverdave August 22, 2018 1:55 pm

        The Kingdom of Hawaii had ceased to exist for many many years, Susan, when The Republic of Hawaii offered, buy unanimous vote, to offer for a third time a Treaty of Annexation to the U.S. in 1898. So, as all major countries had already recognized the Republic of Hawaii as the rightful government in Hawaii, and Liliuokalani had abdicated and sworn allegiance to the new Republic, effectively ending the Monarchy, the United States had every right to accept the offer or not.
        As John Kaulukou, Speaker of the House, in the Republic of Hawaii, told the San Francisco Chronicle, July 28th, 1898 :
        “I regard Annexation as the best thing
        that could happen for Hawaii, both native and foreign population. I have advocated it ever since it became an issue in political politics and I rejoice heartily that it has come. For years I have looked upon it as being, if not inevitable, at least as the only way in which the best interests of Hawaii could be protected and advanced”. So, here is a Polynesian-Hawaiian, Speaker of the House, (which was dominated by Polynesian-Hawaiians) saying annexation was best for all.

  5. Scooby August 22, 2018 6:17 am

    The County Council circus in full swing with Ruggles asking Kamelamela for approval she’s not breaking Intl law…bwaaaahaaaaa. Just goes to show how screwed up our county government is, Just tell her to do her job Kamelamela, she’s not breaking any law that doesn’t exist. The county attorney for some reason goes on about her not representing her district? I’m not sure who the circus clown is but Kamelamela gives her a run for her money.

  6. Ken Conklin August 22, 2018 6:28 am

    Ruggles ran for office after swearing allegiance to the United States and the State of Hawaii. But then she got infected with crazy virus being spread by Keanu Sai and a couple of weirdo lawyers like Laudig. So now that Ruggles claims to have seen the light (hallelujah!) and has reached the conclusion that the U.S. has no jurisdiction in Hawaii and is engaged in a belligerent military occupation of Hawaii; and she believes that the “State of Hawaii” is fake, then she must immediately resign her elected office or else be prosecuted by the “lawful” government for serving as an agent of the oppressor.

    Abstaining from voting is just plain silly. The only way for her to avoid prosecution for “war crimes” is to resign from the fake government of the fake county of the fake state which is merely a puppet regime of the military occupation by the foreign oppressor United States. But of course if she resigns then she will no longer get paid in those fake dollars, and will have no way to pay those fake bills for the very real services she gets. Well Jen, it’s time for you to either sh*t or get off the pot.

    1. Ryan Thompson October 17, 2018 11:27 am

      Agreed Ken! I have been reviewing your research. Well done bringing a lot of this to light, which has been obscured by history and time.

  7. diverdave August 22, 2018 11:05 am

    Jen Ruggles has been taken in by David Sai’s flying circus. The “if this then that must be true” nonsense. Sai’s erroneous claims have already been found to be false by the Hawaii courts, and he is a convicted felon. (See: State of Hawaii vs David K. Sai)
    Sai starts his inaccurate tale by saying that “if the Revolution of 1893 was illegal, then everything after that was illegal.” Using that analogy then the U.S. still belongs to England! Every revolution is illegal from the perspective of the one getting overthrown. However, after Liliuokalani’s failed attempt at a counter revolution in 1895, in which many men were killed and she could only persuade 175 men to take part, (in a population of over 120,000) she formally abdicated, and swore allegiance to the new Republic of Hawaii.
    End of story.
    There is no doubt that Hawaii was leaning toward alliance with the U.S. For the previous 50 years before the change in the form of government Hawaii became more and more “Americanized” as it adopted the English language as it’s main form of communication, to the monetary act of 1865 that made it a law that only United States gold and silver coin could be used in Hawaii, “For all debts, public and private.”
    Even so, after the new form of government was put in place two U.S. Presidents turned away from treaty offers before a third offer was finally accepted by 2/3rds majority vote of the U.S. House and Senate, and signed by President McKinley.

    1. diverdave August 22, 2018 11:14 am

      It constantly amazes me that so little History is taught in the schools here. Perhaps if there was a little more reading of books written at the time, instead of “texting” the kids would know something instead of being so easily taken in by the likes of David Sai, or the guy at the end of the bar for that matter.

  8. Buds4All August 22, 2018 11:58 am

    A True American Traitor! #ImpeachRugglesNow!

  9. Buds4All August 22, 2018 12:02 pm

    Why do you think they call it Dope!

  10. Sterling August 22, 2018 2:35 pm

    Just another self hating, liberal White woman trying to out do all the other crazy liberal White women by seeing who can kiss the most brown akole.

    1. diverdave August 22, 2018 3:01 pm

      These types always brings to mind Walter Murray Gibson, the Prime Minister under the Very Merry Monarch, King David Kalakaua. Gibson was a White guy that convinced Kalakaua that he hated all White people so “I can be trusted”.
      Gibson presided over many Kalakaua scandals, like the attempt at an Imperialistic take over of the entire South Pacific.

      Gibson was finally put on a boat for San Francisco and told never to return.

  11. Dominique Pajot August 26, 2018 12:08 pm

    Mahalo Jen ❤

  12. Anamarie Gonzalez August 26, 2018 6:37 pm

    It is common knowledge that Hawai’i has been illegally occupied by the United States. Mahalo for fighting for the Truth Jen.

  13. Ryan Thompson October 17, 2018 11:25 am

    I am hosting a show on Disruptarian Radio on February 2nd 2019 about this topic. Meanwhile, Mrs. Ruggles needs to review the Morgan Report Check out MORGANREPORTdotORG

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