Tag Archives: Proposition 87

Slate mailers — pay for play on 87

(These slate mailers have deliberately deceptive names. There should be no place for that in a serious political debate. – promoted by SFBrianCL)

Each year, around election time, my mailbox fills up with “slate mailers” — glossy mailers endorsing a whole pile of candidates and propositions.  These mailers are sent by groups with names like “Democratic Voters Choice” or “Citizens for Good Government”

Unfortunately, their names often have little to do with their real purpose.  Instead of being sensible efforts to inform citizens, many slate mailers are actually extortion rackets — pay us, or we’ll endorse the other side.  By producing an ostensibly “Democratic” ballot slate, but with reversed endorsements on a few races, these mailers trick voters into casting votes they wouldn’t have done if fully informed.

Last year, the big buyer was PhRMA, trying to prevent Californians from passing a measure which would have cut drug prices and hurt their profits.  This year, it appears to be the “no on 87” crowd, who want prevent Californians from taxing oil to pay for a renewable energy investment.

To date, I count the No on 87 crowd as having made the following expenditures:

The only “yes” endorsement I found on a slate mailer was on the Cops Voter Guide — at the cost of $100,000.

Undoubtedly, there are other examples of pay-for-play endorsements in slate mailers going on out there.  All you need to do to find them is to go look, and pay close attention to who sent that mailer which appeared in your mailbox.

Why Bill Clinton Stumped For Prop 87

Bill Clinton was in Los Angeles on Friday to promote Proposition 87, which would force oil producers (not consumers) to pay taxes on oil at the wellhead in order to fund renewable energies. 

California Progress Report has posted his full speech.

Clinton on what 87 will do for California:

Prop 87 will move California toward energy independence with cleaner fuels, with wind and solar power. There are people who don't believe you can do it. I do. Look at Brazil. Don't you think you can do it if they did it? They run their cars on ethanol.

Clinton on the myth that 87 is a tax on consumers:

Now, I know the oil companies have trotted out some economists in their ads. But let me ask you something: If they really thought you were going to pay for this, would they be spending all that money trying to convince you to vote against it? You need to know that California is the only state in America without any kind of extraction fee on its natural resources on oil.

Clinton on the larger picture of Prop 87:

California is being given an opportunity and an obligation to do something remarkable to save the planet and improve our national security and create the next generation of good jobs for the American people. That's what Prop 87 represents to me.

It's interesting, I was talking with someone recently about how extraordinary it was that a former president was campaigning for a state's ballot initiative and it struck me that there must be something larger at stake here politically than merely the passage of Prop 87. I hypothesized that this was about defining the Democratic Party as the party of renewable energy and alternative fuels. Thomas Friedman's latest column in The New York Times suggests I may be partly right. 

Friedman tells of a conversation he had recently with James Carville, Bill Clinton's famed advisor, who has been overwhelmed by polling suggesting the importance of energy independence to voters these days. But it's about more than energy. As Clinton himself frames it above, energy independence is about national security. According to Carville:

“Energy independence…is now the No. 1 national security issue. … It’s become kind of a joke with us, because no matter how we ask the question, that’s what comes up.”

Carville, as the Democratic strategist that he is, sees its implications for the Democratic Party brand.

What this means for Democratic Party candidates, argues Mr. Carville, is that it’s no longer enough to have “energy security” as part of a 12-step plan for American renewal. No, it needs to become a defining issue of what Democrats are all about.


The best way for a party that is often viewed as weak on national security to overcome that deficit is to be for energy independence, he noted. Indeed, nothing would be more potent for Democrats now than to capture energy security and all the issues that surround it — from improving our trade deficit by not importing more oil to improving the climate to improving U.S. competitiveness by making us leaders in alternative fuels.

At a time when Democrats are just starting to beat Republicans on the issue of national security, this is the perfect time for the party to reframe the national security debate altogether. It's what Carville is clearly doing behind closed doors and it's what Bill Clinton was doing at UCLA on Friday. It's also what Al Gore did in his ad for Prop 87. Just look at how his ad ends:

Prop 87 is the one thing Californians can do now to clean up the air, help stop the climate crisis and free us from foreign oil. The sooner we do it, the safer we'll be.

This debate goes well beyond Prop 87. For the future health and potency of the Democratic Party and the progressive movement as a whole, it's about the energy security, stupid. 

Bill Clinton In LA On Friday To Campaign For Prop 87

(Some edits – promoted by SFBrianCL)

(Cross-posted from The Courage Campaign)

Bill Clinton is coming to town tomorrow to campaign for Proposition 87. He'll be appearing at the Murphy Sculpture Garden at UCLA at 9:15am for a rally.

Get your ticket HERE.

Clinton is very supportive of prop 87:

“[The Clinton Global Initiative] was designed to tackle big global challenges in bite size pieces,” President Clinton said. “This is a very, very good thing to do and, since California is our biggest state, it pumps 190 million tons of pollution into the air from cars, trucks and buses that run on gasoline and diesel every single year. This is a big deal. I’m very grateful to them.” (Prop 87 Blog)

Chevron Fights Clean Elections and Clean Energy

( – promoted by SFBrianCL)

Cross-posted at Daily Kos

California Chamber of Commerce President Allan Zaremberg isn’t the only Sacramento powerhouse seeking to protect power by opposing reform.

The Chevron Corporation — formerly known as Standard Oil of California — wrote a $250,000 check to a special interest group opposing Proposition 89, the California Clean Money and Fair Elections Act.

Chevron Proposition 87 Chevron has extensively funded the negative attack ads against Proposition 87, the Clean Energy initiative also on the November ballot.

A chronological view of Chevron’s $19 million in contributions contains seven checks written over a nine month period.

The company has a storied history of buying results. In 1984, Chevron’s merger with Gulf Oil was the largest merger that had ever occured. Chevron also gobbled up Texaco, Unocal, and Sacramento politics.

On September 2, 2004, Tom Chorneau reported for the AP:

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s ambitious plan to reorganize almost every aspect of state government was influenced significantly by oil and gas giant ChevronTexaco Corp., which managed to shape such key recommendations as the removal of restrictions on oil refineries.

Many corporations and interest groups participated in the governor’s reform plan — known as the California Performance Review — but state records and interviews with the participants show Chevron enjoyed immense success in influencing the report through its array of lobbyists, attorneys and trade organizations.

And few corporations have spent so much political cash on the governor, either. Since Schwarzenegger’s election last October, the San Ramon company has contributed more than $200,000 to his committees and $500,000 to the California Republican Party.

Chevron, whose officials acknowledge they lobbied hard to get their ideas in the report, is one of about 20 companies that paid to send the governor and his staff to this week’s Republican National Convention in New York. On Wednesday, Schwarzenegger attended a closed-door meeting in New York with representatives of those companies, including Chevron. And just three weeks after the Governor’s Office released the 2,700-page reorganization report, the company gave $100,000 to a Schwarzenegger-controlled political fund.

At the time that was a lot of money. Richard Holober, Executive Director Consumer Federation of California, explained what has happened since then:

Since 2004, Chevron gave $3 million in political contributions in California. For a company that made a record $14 billion in profits last year, it was money well spent. Despite public indignation, big oil crushed a proposed state tax on windfall oil profits.

ChevronChevron has proven successful in the current system. The company has spend millions and ensured they make record billions.

Under Proposition 89, Chevron would be able to contribute $10,000 against each initiative, removing almost twenty-million dollars in negative ads. Chevron employees would be able to contribute, but Proposition 89 would create a system where political issues aren’t decided like an auction.

Clean Money — public financing of campaigns — has proven successful in Maine and Arizona. Included in Proposition 89 are the best practices from those systems, adapted for California. The initiative also includes are review process that will allow regular refinement.

California Blog Roundup for August 16, 2006

Today’s California Blog Roundup is on the flip. Teasers: Phil Angelides, Arnold Schwarzenegger, CA-11, CA-04, John Doolittle, Richard Pombo, Republican corruption, Proposition 87, Proposition 89, redistricting, term limits, health care.

Governor’s Race

Jerry McNerney / Paid-For Pombo / CA-11

Charlie Brown / 15% Doolittle / CA-04

Other Republican Paragons

Health Care


Goo-Goo Stuff

  • OK, here’s the deal. Redistricting lives for now, but won’t be combined with term limit reform.
  • The Mad Professah on the 2001 redistricting deal and reforming it. Have a read, but remind yourself that anything involving spending requires a 2/3 majority, so a gerrymander into a simple majority is nice, but not ideal.
  • Cathy Feng from Common Cause on redistricting. If people want to redistrict the state in some nonpartisan way, that’s fine (subject to endless caveats about the way it’s done), but for California to redistrict Congressional districts that way when Texas doesn’t is just stupid unilateral disarmament.
  • Oh, and term limits? Basically useless for anything except putting control of government in the hands of staff and lobbyists.

The Rest

California Blog Roundup for August 11, 2006

Today’s California Blog Roundup is on the flip. Teasers: Phil Angelides, Arnold Schwarzenegger, CA-11, CA-04, Bill Durston, Charlie Brown, John Doolittle, Richard Pombo, Dan Lundgren, Republican corruption, Proposition 90, Proposition 89, Proposition 87, health care, global warming.

Bloggers on GovernorPhil.com

As I’m sure you know, a group of independent California bloggers (including our own sfbriancl) launched Governor Phil yesterday, to track the race and tell folks how they felt about Governor Phil (good, they feel good). Here are some bloggy reactions, in no particular order:

Governor’s Race

Jerry McNerney / Paid-For Pombo / CA-11

Charlie Brown / 15% Doolittle / CA-04

Health Care


The Rest

California Blog Roundup for July 31, 2006

Today’s California Blog Roundup is on the flip. Teasers: Phil Angelides, Arnold Schwarzenegger, CA-04, CA-11, Jerry McNerney, Richard Pombo, John Doolittle, Republican corruption, Proposition 90, Proposition 89, Proposition 87, voting, prisons, health care, immigration.

Governor’s Race

Jerry McNerney / Paid-For Pombo / CA-11

15% Doolittle / CA-04

Other Republican Paragons


The Rest

California Blog Roundup for July 27, 2006

Today’s California Blog Roundup is on the flip. Teasers: Phil Angelides, Arnold Schwarzenegger, CA-04, CA-11, Richard Pombo, John Doolittle, Proposition 89, Proposition 87, health care, telecom.

Governor’s Race — Poll Stuff

Governor’s Race

Jerry McNerney / Paid-For Pombo / CA-11

15% Doolittle / CA-04


The Rest