For this year's election, the weight of California's labor movement is falling behind an effort to defeat Proposition 32, the deceptively-named "Stop Special Interest Money Now Act" that would virtually eliminate political activity by labor in California.
From the Stop The Special Exemptions Act website:
The so-called “Stop Special Interest Money Now Act” will be on the ballot in November. Its backers claim this initiative is a “simple, fair and balanced solution” to the problem of big money in Sacramento. But their claims just don't add up.
It’s not what it seems. When you take a close look, it’s clear that this measure was intentionally written to create special exemptions for billionaire businessmen—giving them even more power to write their own set of rules. It's an unfair, unbalanced approach, and that's why newspapers across California are warning voters to take a look at what's really inside.
Supporters claim the Special Exemptions Act "attacks AT EVERY POINT where money changes hands between Special Interests and California's politicians."
The truth? This initiative exempts secretive Super PACs which can raise unlimited amounts of money from corporate special interests and billionaire businessmen.
The Special Exemptions Act does nothing to prevent anonymous donors from spending unlimited amounts to influence elections. It was also intentionally written to create special exemptions for Wall Street investment firms, hedge funds, insurance companies,real-estate developers and many other powerful interests. In addition, there’s nothing to stop corporations from creating secretive front groups and making unlimited campaign expenditures.
Supporters claim the Special Exemptions Act solves the problems created by big money in Sacramento.
The truth? Special exemptions for corporate special interests ensure they'll keep writing their own rules.
The large web of special exemptions would ensure that billionaire businessmen and corporate special interests can continue to write their own rules. Only a small number of corporations would really be restricted. Sole proprietorships, Real Estate Investment Trusts, LLCs, LLPs and many other types of companies are all intentionally exempted.
Supporters claim the Special Exemptions Act is a "simple, fair, balanced solution."
The truth? It was intentionally written to advantage corporate special interests and disadvantage working people.
It's not a balanced approach. There's a reason that Wall Street investors, CEOs and big developers are lining up to support the Special Exemptions Act: they will be able to continue funneling undisclosed money into secretive political front groups, while everyday heroes like nurses, teachers and firefighters would lose their ability to speak out on critical issues like class size, improving patient care and protecting public safety.