Category Archives: California Election: November 2012

California Election Research: Propositions 30 & 38, Tax Increases for Education

Ballotpedia, Prop 30: California Proposition 30, Sales and Income Tax Increase (2012)

Ballotpedia, Prop 38: California Proposition 38, State Income Tax Increase to Support Education (2012)

These are competing propositions that both increase taxes to support education in California.

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California Election Research: Proposition 40, Referendum on the State Senate Redistricting Plan

Ballotpedia: California Proposition 40, Referendum on the State Senate Redistricting Plan (2012)

This is kind of a dead proposition, in the sense that nobody’s opposing it anymore.  It’s basically California asking for rubber-stamp approval of its redistricting plan, a plan that nobody seems to have any real problem with.

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California Election Research: Proposition 37, Mandatory Labeling of Genetically Engineered Food

Ballotpedia: California Proposition 37, Mandatory Labeling of Genetically Engineered Food (2012)

I am so, so sick of this ballot initiative.

Neither side can seem to stop talking about it.  And whereas I might have cared about it if people weren’t trying to shove their opinions about it at me everywhere I looked, now I really just don’t fucking care.

Does that make me a bad person?  Probably.

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California Election Research: Proposition 36, Changes in the “Three Strikes” Law

I meant to spread these out more, but, you know, I’m still sick, and these aren’t that hard to write.

Ballotpedia: California Proposition 36, Changes in the “Three Strikes” Law (2012)

I don’t know how much of this is bleed from watching too many forensic shows on which people either manipulate this law or get taken advantage of through use of it, but I’ve never been a fan of the “three strikes” bludgeon.  This is partially because it’s always been my impression that most of the people getting life imprisonment from this type of law are nonviolent offenders who were probably busted for smoking pot one too many times, and I think life in prison is a drastic overreaction to that.

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California Election Research: Proposition 35, Ban on Human Trafficking and Sex Slavery

Ballotpedia: California Proposition 35, Ban on Human Trafficking and Sex Slavery (2012)

Everything about this initiative looks good at first blush.  Come down harder on sex traffickers!  I am all for that!

However, when I started to see that some LGBT activists and people who work with trafficking victims were opposing it, I started to fear that the proposition isn’t all that it seems.

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California Election Research: Proposition 34, End the Death Penalty Initiative

I’m still sick, so you’re getting Prop 34, as I’ve already written it.

Ballotpedia: California Proposition 34, the End the Death Penalty Initiative (2012)

This one doesn’t seem to have much hidden in it.  It ends the death penalty in California.  Whether people are for or against it seems to be aligned with how they feel about the death penalty in a general sense, not how they feel about how well-written the proposition is.  What a welcome change.

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California Election Research: Proposition 32, Paycheck Protection Initiative

I’m still pretty sick, so if this post is delirious, I’ll fix it when I’m recovered.

Ballotpedia: California Proposition 32, the “Paycheck Protection” Initiative (2012)

I’m always hopeful about campaign finance reform initiatives.  This one bans a lot of different corporate and union contributions to candidates, most notably those that come from docking their employees’ wages without permission.

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California Election Research: Proposition 31, Two-Year State Budget Cycle

So, being a Californian, when I get my Sample Ballot I tend to look down at it and say, “WTH?”  And then I go and do research.  I do a lot of research.  (Not helping this process is all of the political ads—the more commercials I see in favor of a ballot measure, the more likely I am to vote against it, because I start having the sneaking suspicion that some very large special interest with a lot of money is trying to get it passed for some nefarious purpose.)

Anyway, since I have a blog now, you get to share in my research!  Lucky you!

I’m going to start with California’s Propositions.  Ballotpedia appears to be the best source for all the arguments for and against each Proposition, so unless otherwise noted, more information on any uncited facts I assign to that specific ballot measure can be found at the Ballotpedia article for the Proposition in question, which I will link to at the top.  If I note something more general in a manner that suggests it’s common knowledge and you think it isn’t, then feel free to nudge me for a citation.  We’re all battling our own assumptions, after all.

I’m going into almost all of these ballot propositions with no opinion, so I’ll be starting out neutral and then becoming increasingly more opinionated as I write the entry until reaching my own personal conclusion at the end.  Therefore, if you disagree with my logic at any point, you should be able to see where and to see why you might disagree with me.

Because I think Jerry Brown was an asshole for passing legislation specifically to get Proposition 30 listed first, I’m going to save it till the end and discuss it with the competing (and better-written, from what I can tell) Proposition 38.  (I don’t like sleazeballs, Governor Brown.)  Thus, I’m starting with Proposition 31: a change to a two-year state budget cycle.  Without further ado:

Ballotpedia: California Proposition 31, Two-Year State Budget Cycle (2012)

Proposition 31 requires fiscal responsibility from the California state government, which is a good thing.  But it doesn’t provide any provisions for helping this happen—only says it must—which is worrying.  It also gives citizens greater transparency in government, which is a good thing.  But under certain circumstances it grants the governor unilateral power, which is not.

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