The No on Prop 30 campaign has released its first video against the governor’s initiative to raise taxes and the ad criticizes Brown and the Legislature for various events over the summer, including approval of high-speed rail and a state parks scandal. These examples are used to argue that the state is a poor fiscal steward of the funds that it already has and that voters cannot trust legislators with even more tax money. View the video here:
The Bee notes that “The No on 30 campaign has had little money so far to get its message out, reporting raising just $10,000 in the first half of the year. The campaign announced today that it had received a $100,000 donation from John Cox, a businessman and former Chicago-area Republican official who ran for president in 2008 before abandoning his long-shot candidacy.”
The Yes on Proposition 39 recently played hard ball to get its share of the spotlight from other tax measures, namely the governor’s (Prop 30) and Molly Munger’s rival campaign (Prop 38). Under Proposition 39, the state's corporate tax formula would be revised so that most companies would have to calculate their liability based on their share of sales in California. It would provide staff coffers additional revenue. So the Yes on Prop 39 campaign attempted to goad four companies -- Chrysler, General Motors, Kimberly-Clark and International Paper --- into pledging not to oppose the measure with the following threat: make the pledge or be branded “the big four tax dodgers.”
On July 30, the campaign gave the four companies a noon deadline and said if they didn’t reverse course they would be tarred as tax dodgers in a campaign launch centered on the companies’ current contracts paid with Californians' tax dollars. The companies were targeted because they have lobbied successfully to keep a corporate tax loophole alive.
The governor is having no trouble attracting donors to support his campaign to pass Proposition 30, which would raise the state sales tax on everyone and income taxes on California's highest earners. It was recently reported that the initiative’s campaign has collected $6.3 million in the first half of the year. Furthermore, the campaign is sitting on $5 million in cash, which will likely come in handy as tough campaigning is in store for the run-up to November. Among the recent donors to Proposition 30 were the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America, the California Cable & Telecommunications Association, Disney Worldwide Services Inc., Warner Bros., and a California School Employees Association political action committee. It is believed that the campaign’s current stash is over $8 million.
In addition, a campaign called Reclaim California's Future has announced that it will spend more than $1 million to increase voter turnout, especially among minorities and infrequent voters. The campaign plans to make telephone calls, walk door to door and fund a "very robust get-out-the-vote effort” in support of the governor’s tax measure. More coverage of their efforts here.
And while the governor’s campaign stash and the support of the aforementioned campaign are two positives, there has been a string of bad luck for the governor’s tax measure as well. Two events occurred that could threaten voter support come November. NBC News notes:
There are 4 tax-related measures on the November ballot (Propositions 30, 31, 38 and 39) and taxpayer groups are outraged that the Senate Governance and Finance Committee blocked a hearing on the measures from being broadcast to the public. It is believed that Democratic leaders did not want the testimony to be made public due to critical comments of the Governor’s tax hike initiative (Prop 30) as well as comments about the recent raises that were handed to Senate staffers during a time of budget crisis. Drawing attention to the raises may undercut voter support for an increase in taxes, which is being asked by the governor’s measure.
Dan Walters at the Bee notes: “But Rhys Williams, Senate Leader Darrell Steinberg's spokesman, said the cutoff wasn't aimed specifically at Jon Coupal and other tax opponents, but at everyone arguing for and against all four measures. ‘It was inappropriate to provide legislative resources to promote the ballot measure campaigns of either side, and in particular to make those public-funded resources easily available for exploitation in political TV commercials,’ Williams said in an email. ‘No different to the rules that apply to legislative staff.’ Yet the stated purpose of the hearing -- one required by state law, incidentally -- was to air pro and con arguments on ballot measures.”
(See the CA Republican Party's endorsements here.)
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- Smoke and Mirrors: New Prop 30 Ad
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- Voters Feeling Undecided on Tax Measures? New PPIC Poll Shows Shaky Voter Support
- New Prop 32 Ad
- Opponents of Prop 32 Outspend Supporters
- Prop 38 Backer Prepares for “Big Air War”