Prop. 32 reduces clout of unions and corporations

During election day on Nov. 6, California voters will vote yes or no on Proposition 32, a measure placed on the ballot in an attempt to reduce the clout of unions and corporations in politics.

This proposition prevents unions and corporations from collecting money through automatic payroll deductions of their members for political candidates and their campaigns. It prevents unions and corporations from contributing money directly and indirectly to those groups. Prop. 32 also prevents contractors from donating to the politicians who decide their contracts.

A yes vote supports the changes listed above to campaign finance laws, while a no vote opposes the changes and keeps current campaign finance laws as they are.

“The measure bans all corporate giving directly to candidates, preventing millions of dollars from exchanging hands between lobbyists and legislators to sway votes. And it closes a loophole that allows millions in corporate giving to political committees and parties that in-turn take that money and give it to politicians,” claimed the web site yesprop32.com.
The main argument in favor of the proposition is that it reduces the political grip of unions and corporations by limiting their financial support of politicians. This will supposedly make politicians focus on the priorities of the general population.

But not everybody supports this controversial proposition.

“Prop. 32 is a misleading initiative that will silence the voice of middle-class union members, while doing nothing to slow down corporate spending on elections,” said Castro Valley Teachers’ Association President John Green.

The “No on 32 Stop the Special Exemptions Act” campaign is supported by the California Teachers Association, California Nurses Association, and California Labor Federation, among other labor organizations and groups. No on Prop. 32 has raised $45,600,000 to campaign against the proposition, according to Ballotpedia.

The main argument against the proposition is that automatic payroll deductions are the main source of funds for unions while corporations use other means to pool money for political campaigning. This will limit the ability of unions to support politicians with favorable policies, but it will not limit corporations from gathering funds to support politicians.

Similar ballot measures restricting payroll deductions for unions have been voted down in the past. These measures were Prop. 75 in 2005 and Prop. 226 in 1998.

“If Prop. 32. passes, it will be much more difficult for candidates and laws to support education because there is no monetary profit in education,” said teacher Carmelina Frasca.

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