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For Immediate Release:  Monday, May 3, 2010
Contact:  Kim Alexander
916-441-2494, kimalex at Helps Californians Prepare for June 8th Statewide Primary
Nonpartisan Web site identifies top proposition donors


Sacramento, CA – Today the California Voter Foundation (CVF) debuted its new California Online Voter Guide to help Californians prepare to vote in the upcoming Primary election. The guide is online at

“California voters have important choices to make this election year,” said CVF president Kim Alexander. “Californians will elect a new governor, and also decide on propositions that could impact how elections are conducted for many years to come.” The June 8th ballot includes five propositions, two of which (Propositions 14 and 15) would, if enacted, reshape California primary elections and campaign financing; a third measure, Prop. 16, would impose new two-thirds voter approval requirements for local public electricity providers.

CVF’s nonpartisan guide, now in its 19th edition, covers all statewide, congressional and legislative contests as well as the five statewide propositions. Voters will find lists of the top donors for and against each of the propositions, providing a shortcut to help voters easily determine which interest groups are behind each measure. The guide also includes links to official campaign web sites, contact information for all California state and federal campaigns, a Voting FAQ and contact information for county election offices. “Voters looking for easy, convenient access to reliable information about state candidates and measures will find it at,” Alexander said.

CVF researched proposition campaign financing through May 3 and found that the proponents of Prop. 16 have far outraised any other proposition campaign this season. Prop. 16 is sponsored and funded entirely by Pacific Gas and Electric, which has so far donated over $34 million in support of the measure. Other big donors behind this election’s propositions include Mercury General Corporation and Affiliates, which has donated over $7 million in support of Prop. 17, which would change auto insurance pricing rules, and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, whose ballot measure campaign has donated $1,750,000 to support Prop. 14, which would revise the primary election process for California.

PG&E donations to Prop. 16 are among the highest amounts ever contributed by a single donor to a proposition in California history; other donors on a similar scale in recent years include Stephen Bing’s company, 21, which donated nearly $50 million in support of Prop. 87 (a November 2006 energy measure); Philip Morris, which donated $35 million to oppose Prop. 86 (a tobacco tax measure on the November 2006 ballot) and the Morongo Band of Mission Indians and Pechanga Band of Luiseno Mission Indians, which donated $42 and $46 million respectively to support Propositions 94, 95, 96 and 97 (tribal gaming measures on the 2008 primary ballot).

The California Voter Foundation is a nonprofit, nonpartisan 501(c)(3) organization advancing the responsible use of technology to improve the democratic process. CVF’s 2010 voter outreach projects are supported by the Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation.

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