California November 2012 Propositions

We have eleven statewide propositions on this ballot.

Election Day is Tuesday, November 6th. You can also vote before then at Early Voting locations. Check your sample ballot, or ask your county's Registrar of Voters to find out where. For instance, in Alameda County you can vote at the Registrar's office in downtown Oakland, among other places.

If you are not registered to vote, you can fix that by filling out a simple form on the Secretary of State's web site. No paper required! Register by October 22nd to vote in this election.

[30] [38] [31] [32] [33] [34] [35] [36] [37] [39] [40]

no Prop. 30: Temporary Taxes to Fund Education
no Prop. 38: Tax to Fund Education and Early Childhood Programs
Props. 30 and 38 are paired - if they both pass, only the one with more Yes votes goes into effect. 30 would raise state income tax on the $250,000-and-up bracket for seven years, and raise sales tax by ¼ cent for four years. The total extra revenue would be about $6 billion per year. 38 would raise income tax on nearly everyone, to varying degrees, by adding a whole buch of new tax brackets. It would raise around $10 billion more per year. Both measures would send the extra money to schools. It's that last part that I don't like. Schools are great. Everyone loves schools. But a statewide ballot is not the right way to manage school budget allocations. Raising taxes would be great. My own preferred method would be the long talked about split-roll modification to Proposition 13. But tying the tax increase to specific spending decisions and locking them in for years is a terrible idea. I recommend NO on both measures.

That said, the harsh reality is that if Prop. 30 fails, there will be automatic cuts to the state budget. Big ones. If you want to avoid that, 30 is the one to vote for.

no Prop. 31: State Budget
This includes a grab-bag of changes to the state budget process. Maybe it would have been a good idea a couple years ago, when the budget process was broken and we got months-long deadlocks every year. But we fixed that with 2010's Prop. 25. Now the budget process works pretty well. We don't need this.

no Prop. 32: Political Contributions by Payroll Deduction
This is aimed squarely at unions. It's the next step in the process started by the Citizens United decision. That allowed unlimited political contributions by both corporations and unions; now they want to make it corporations only. This is funded by the out-of-state billionaire douchebag Koch brothers. Vote no.

no Prop. 33: Auto Insurance Based on Driver's History
This is a slightly-changed re-run of 2010's Prop. 17, the one where Mercury Insurance tried to buy their own state law. We rejected that one.

yes Prop. 34: Death Penalty
Abolishes the death penalty in California. Not only is this the moral thing to do, but it will save us $130 million per year. YES.

no Prop. 35: Human Trafficking
On the surface this sounds like a good idea but if you look at the details it's very bad. It would expand the definition of human trafficking to a ridiculous degree, to the point that a massage therapist's roommate's children could be charged as pimps. I am going to reluctantly vote no. However I expect it will pass, since the arguments against are too subtle.

yes Prop. 36: Three Strikes
Another proposed revision to the Three Strikes law. As the law is currently written, the first two strikes have to be serious or violent felonies but the third strike can be any felony. This would change it so that the third strike has to be a serious or violent felony too. This is obviously the way the law should have been written in the first place, so yes.

yes Prop. 37: Labeling Genetically Engineered Foods
I don't have a problem with labeling. In fact I very much like labeling. The objections to this one sound like bunk. Vote yes.

yes Prop. 39: Taxes on Multi-State Businesses
Currently multi-state businesses can choose one of two methods to determine their California taxable income. These are called the "three-factor method" and the "single sales factor method". This proposition would eliminate the "three-factor method" and require use the "single sales factor method" only. Normally I would say that arcane accounting details like this do not belong on the ballot, but this will both simplify the tax code and increase revenue by about $1 billion per year. So, sure.

yes Prop. 40: Redistricting
Approve or reject new State Senate districts drawn by the Citizens Redistricting Commission. The Commission was created by 2008's Prop. 11. I was against that, but it turned out more or less ok, so I'll vote Yes on their proposed districts. Note that the people who put Prop. 40 on the ballot, who wanted you to vote No and reject the new districts, have shut down their campaign.

Secretary of State's voter information page.
Another propositions rating page.
My recommendations for the June 2012, November 2010, June 2010, 2008, 2006, 2005, and 2004 propositions.
Back to Jef's page.