Prop 24

Post-election Survey: Marijuana, Climate Change, Budget Reform Captured Voters’ Attention

By Public Policy Institute of California

Of the nine propositions on the November statewide ballot, Proposition 19—the unsuccessful measure to legalize marijuana—attracted the most interest among voters, and those who voted against it felt more strongly about the outcome than those who voted yes. These are among the key findings of a post-election survey released today by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) with support from The James Irvine Foundation.  

In the PPIC survey of 2,003 voters who reported participating in the election, 38 percent say they were most interested in Proposition 19, followed by 16 percent who name Proposition 23, the measure to suspend the state’s air pollution law (AB 32). And, similar to Proposition 19, those who voted no on Proposition 23 are much more likely than those who voted yes to call the outcome of the vote on the measure important.

The Morning After

By Robert Cruickshank

California Democrats are poised to have a clean sweep of the statewide elected offices, depending on whether Kamala Harris can maintain a razor-thin margin of victory over Steve Cooley. (Seriously, who the hell votes a Brown-Boxer-Newsom-Cooley ticket? WTF is wrong with those people?)

Here are the results as we know them, with 96.6% reporting across California. Note that the Secretary of State's site appears to be back up. It's not her fault the site crashed - they apparently got screwed by a vendor that made promises they could not keep.

Governor: Brown 54, Whitman 41
US Senate: Boxer 52, Fiorina 42
Lt. Gov: Newsom 50, Maldonado 39
Sec State: Bowen 53, Dunn 38
Controller: Chiang 55, Strickland 36
Treasurer: Lockyer 56, Walters 36
Attorney General: Harris 46.1%, Cooley 45.6%
Insurance Commissioner: Jones 50, Villines 38
Supt. of Public Instruction: Torlakson 55, Aceves 45

Ballot props:

3 State Propositions That Aren’t Getting Enough Attention

By Paul Hogarth

With the November election less than two weeks away, the media buzz is all about Jerry Brown and Meg Whitman. At the grass-roots level, activists have been organizing for Proposition 19 (marijuana) – and environmentalists have focused on defeating Prop 23. But the three propositions that arguably have the greatest impact on California’s future – Propositions 24, 25 and 26 – are barely getting any attention at all. The state budget may be a boring subject, but Sacramento will remain a dysfunctional cesspool that generations of elected officials cannot fix until we make structural changes. Getting rid of the two-thirds budget rule by passing Proposition 25 is a critical first step, and passing Prop 24 will undo some of the most recent damage that is driving the state to bankruptcy. But even passing Props 24 and 25 is not enough, because Proposition 26 threatens to make a terrible situation worse – by extending two-thirds to all fee hikes. In fact, Prop 26 could make the passage of Prop 25 and the defeat of Prop 23 virtually meaningless.

Unilateral Disarmament

By Robert Cruickshank

It's a recurring theme almost every election year here in California: some voters, many of them progressive, proclaim a "no on everything" stance on the ballot propositions. Intended as a protest at the flawed initiative process, this approach is little more than unilateral disarmament in the face of a concerted right-wing, corporate-funded effort to destroy California's prosperity and democracy. Instead of making a really futile and stupid gesture that won't help fix California's woes, progressives need to make intelligent choices on the November ballot - some of which involve a Yes vote.

I've been having this discussion on Facebook with several friends this past week, but one of the most prominent exponents of the "no on everything" approach is Markos Moulitsas. He's mentioned this many times on Daily Kos, with one of the clearest articulations coming in January 2008:

This November's Ballot Initiatives

By Dave Johnson
Speak Out California

Here we go! This is a roundup of the ballot measures. I'm going to provide the official info, the summary and the "What Voting Yes Means" info from the state, and a discussion of the measure. In the coming month Speak Out California will go into detail on these initiatives with a progressive viewpoint, research into the funding and supporters/opponents and their reasons, and our own endorsements.

Proposition 19, The Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010.

This proposition changes California Law to Legalize Marijuana and Allow It to Be Regulated and Taxed.

Repeal Tax Breaks for Big Corporations -- Vote YES on Proposition 24

By Sara Flocks
California Labor Federation

Time and again, we’ve seen how the two-thirds requirement to pass a state budget has allowed the Republican minority to hold our budget process hostage in order to get what they want. And what they want are huge tax giveaways for a small number of incredibly wealthy corporations -- giveaways that will cost our state billions.

In September 2008 and February 2009, Republicans demanded the passage of three massive tax breaks for corporations as part of the budget deal. These tax breaks will tear a gaping hole in the already tattered state budget, and would increase our budget deficit by estimated $1.3 billion every year after they take effect.

Greenlining’s Guide to November Ballot Propositions: Corporations Trying to Buy Our Democracy - Again

By The Greenlining Institute

It’s getting to be a depressingly familiar pattern: A ballot crowded with confusing propositions, one or more of which were placed there by corporate interests looking to pad their own pockets at the expense of taxpayers.  Here we go again.

In June, voters narrowly defeated two such special-interest measures, Propositions 16 and 17, whose corporate sponsors spent a combined $56 million on their campaigns. While in the end the voters made the right choice, two big corporations came close to using the ballot box to buy policies designed for their own benefit. This pattern of special-interest initiatives is repeating yet again -- a sure sign that it’s time to reform the ballot initiative process.

The Worst of the Worst: NO on 23

CFC's November Ballot Recs: Corporate Interests vs. The Public Good

By Zack Kaldveer
Consumer Federation of California

The June defeat of Propositions 16 and 17 was welcomed news for Californians fed up with the use of the initiative process to advance narrow corporate interests. The lavish spending by PG&E ($46 million on Prop 16) and Mercury Insurance ($17 million on Prop 17) to increase their bottom lines at the public's expense only confirmed voters’ suspicions that greed was the real motivating factor behind those measures. Despite PG&E outspending opponents 575 to 1, and Mercury Insurance its opposition 12 to 1, a slim majority of voters saw through the pitch these snake oil salesmen were making, rejecting each by a margin of 4 to 5 points.

Unfortunately for California, June's election results have not served as the deterrent  some may have hoped. November brings a new crop of initiatives bankrolled by  some of our nation's most notorious polluters and corporate bad actors. Similarly, initiatives placed on the ballot to benefit the public will face the typical wall of opposition from big business interests willing to spend tens of millions of dollars on slick and deceptive campaigns with a singular purpose: mislead the voters.

Prop 19 Battle At California Democratic Party Elections Board

By Robert Cruickshank

On Saturday the California Democratic Party Resolutions Committee took up the question of November ballot initiative endorsements. After some debate, the committee narrowly rejected Tom Ammiano's proposal to endorse Prop 19, and then unanimously approved the original plan to remain neutral on that initiative.

The speakers in support of Prop 19 - Ammiano and Alice Huffman of the California NAACP - made powerful arguments in support of the measure. Ammiano cited the more than 20,000 signatures we at the Courage Campaign (where I work as Public Policy Director) gathered in support of the initiative, the stack of which you can see at right, alongside the strong case for Prop 19 on the merits - to provide prison reform, help fix the budget, and to admit that our policy of prohibition has failed.

All The Things The Polls Don’t Tell

By Peter Schrag

Forget  the headlines and all the heavy breathing generated by last week’s Field Poll results of the races for governor and U.S. Senator – Carly Fiorina closing with Barbara Boxer; Meg Whitman’s millions bringing her dead even with Jerry Brown.

What’s most notable in the numbers, despite the differences between Republicans Fiorina and Whitman (on the one hand) and Democrats Boxer and Brown (on the other) is that they seem to have less to do with voter perceptions of the four candidates than with the voters’ party affiliation, political ideology, degree of social disaffection, ethnicity and location.

With one major exception – strong voter support for Proposition 25 lowering the margin required to pass the state budget from two-thirds to a simple majority – the same seems to be true about the initiatives on the November ballot.