Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Can you say $10,000 limits?

Under Proposition 89, each corporation will only be able to spend $10,000 for or against any state ballot measure. Today's San Francisco Chronicle has a must read article on the one hundred million dollars big oil and big tobacco are spending in California.

The article lists how R.J. Reynolds has already contributed $9 million and Philip Morris has contributed $26 million against Proposition 86. With Prop 89, that combined $35 million would shrink to a more reasonable $20,000.

The current system is so broken, that the spending by big tobacco and big oil is actually going to make it harder for voters to find out about Proposition 89:

"When you have so much spending occurring on a couple of initiatives, you have to wonder how the voters will get information on other measures on the ballot," said Mark Baldassare, executive director of the Public Policy Institute of California in San Francisco. [...]

That aggressive advertising is making it harder for other ballot measures to find a place in the market. Unlike candidates, propositions are not guaranteed a low rate for television commercials.

"It's driving the rates up fairly significantly," said Paul Hefner, a spokesman for the Rebuild California Plan, which is promoting the bond package, which includes measures to improve flood protection and build new schools and highways.

Despite the $100 million being spent by big oil and big tobacco, we need to pass Prop 89. Please go to the action center and get involved.