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This week in big-time campaign cash

I knew it was coming, but it still hurts my head: The number of $25,000-and-up contributions to California campaigns and committees suddenly went through the roof this past week as Election Day neared and polls tightened. Given the sudden, enormous jump in notable contributions, I must resort to a more stripped-down format this week. The highlights in brief:

The campaign to defeat Proposition 8 raked in at least about $2.5 million this past week; I’m quite sure many of the big-ticket donations gathered at high-profile Southern California fundraisers this week have not yet been logged in as of this posting.

Chesapeake Energy doubled down on Proposition 10, putting another $1 million into the alternative fuels intiative from which it stands to make a bundle (though its ante is still chump change next to the $15.75 million put up by Prop. 10 proponent T. Boone Pickens‘ Clean Energy Fuels Corp.)

A bunch of Florida Republicans anted up for California’s proposed legislative redistricting reform.

And labor unions (especially the SEIU) and safe Democratic officeholders with money to burn tithed their cash to the Democratic Party, which seems to smell GOP blood in the water in districts up and down the state.

Details — so many details — after the jump… Continue Reading

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This week in big-time campaign cash

Topping this week’s roundup of big ($25,000 or more) spenders on California campaigns and committees yet again is T. Boone Pickens‘ Seal Beach-based Clean Energy, which put another $3 million Wednesday into the campaign for Proposition 10, a $5 billion bond measure called the California Alternative Fuels Initiative that would provide cash incentives to buyers of certain high-fuel-economy and alternative-fuel vehicles as well as to companies researching and developing renewable energy and cleaner cars. You know Pickens stands to make a bundle if this measure passes; Clean Energy has now contributed almost $11.75 million of the almost $13.5 million collected overall for the campaign… so far.

The Burlingame-based California Teachers Association gave $1 million Tuesday to oppose Proposition 8, the proposed state constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage. Other contributions to the “No on 8” effort this week included $450,000 Wednesday from healthcare supply heir and billionaire philanthropist Jon Stryker of Kalamazoo, Mich., (bringing his total thus far to $1 million), and then $25,000 each from Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa‘s mayoral campaign committee Monday; Regent Entertainment CEO Paul Colichman on Tuesday; the Los Angeles-based Breslauer, Rutman & Anderson management services firm Wednesday; personal and dating ad Web site operator Progressive Computing LLC of San Diego on Wednesday; Malibu retiree Charles Williams on Wednesday; and Levi Strauss executive assistant Andrea Fong of San Francisco on Wednesday. Also, Equality California moved $1.45 million it had collected, and the Washington-based Human Rights Campaign moved $250,000 from its California Marriage PAC, into the main “No on 8” account. Meanwhile, A&Z Produce owner Jay Clark of Centerville, Utah gave $25,000 Sunday to support Proposition 8.

The California Correctional Peace Officers Association — the state’s prison-guard union — put up $1 million Wednesday against Proposition 5, which would expand state funding and oversight for treatment and rehab programs for nonviolent drug offenders and parolees while reducing criminal penalties and limiting courts’ authority to lock up offenders who violate probation or parole. The Pala Band of Mission Indians gave $50,000 Saturday to oppose Prop. 5.

The California Teachers Association also gave $300,000 Monday, while the Service Employees International Union’s California State Council gave $250,000 the same day, to the joint campaign against Proposititions 6 and 9; the Democratic State Central Committee of California put up $185,824.64 and the California Professional Firefighters put up $44,345.59 Wednesday to oppose the measures as well. Proposition 6 is a tough-on-crime package including adult prosecution for gang-related criminals 14 and up; annual criminal background checks for public housing residents; harsher bail conditions and penalties for certain crimes; and so on. Proposition 9 seeks to expand crime victims’ rights including restitution.

The SEIU’s State Council also gave $300,000 Tuesday to Strengthening California Through Leadership, a PAC controlled by Assembly Speaker Karen Bass, D-Los Angeles.

And the SEIU’s State Council struck yet again, giving $200,000 Tuesday to oppose Proposition 4, the proposed state constitutional amendment which would require doctors to inform the parent or guardian of a minor 48 hours before providing an abortion to that minor. San Francisco-based Planned Parenthood Golden Gate gave $125,000 the same day also to oppose Prop. 4.

Much more on propositions 1a, 2, 7 and 11, plus a bunch of legislative races, after the jump… Continue Reading

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Dueling ‘bubble’ ads for and against Prop. 4

Here’s a recently released ad from the campaign against Proposition 4, the proposed state constitutional amendment which would require doctors to inform the parent or guardian of a minor 48 hours before providing an abortion to that minor. It’s actually recycled from the campaign against Proposition 85 of 2006, a measure nearly identical to this year’s Proposition 4 which voters rejected 54.2 percent to 45.8 percent.

And here’s the “Yes on 4” folks’ response:

Actually, I see problems with both ads.

In the “No on 4” ad, it’s not necessarily true that abusive or violent parents would have to be notified; Proposition 4 provides that pregnant minors could petition a juvenile court to waive the notification requirement, presenting evidence that they’re mature and informed enough to decide whether to have an abortion or not or that parental notification wouldn’t be in their best interest. Opponents of the measure have noted it’s unlikely an abused, pregnant teen would be able to mount a court argument this way.

And in the “Yes on 4” ad, the victim in question had been impregnanted by her stepfather, who then oversaw her abortion; Planned Parenthood had no way of knowing this, and under Proposition 4, the stepfather could’ve accepted the parental notification without the mother ever knowing.

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Bay Area House members to meet the masses

You’ve got some opportunities for face time with your member of Congress coming soon:

Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, will host a Women and Minority-owned Business Forum in California State University, East Bay’s Oakland Center Campus, at 1000 Broadway, from 9 a.m. to noon this Saturday, Oct. 18; she’ll talk about access to state and federal contract opportunities, and resources and agencies will be on hand to meet directly with attendees. Later the same day, Lee will host a $75-per-head Women’s Tea campaign fundraiser in Scott’s restaurant, at 2 Broadway in Oakland’s Jack London Square, from 2 to 4 p.m.; she’ll be joined by Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Los Angeles, and Rep. Lynn Woolsey, D-Petaluma, who’ll join Lee in discussing their efforts to stop the war in Iraq, as well as by NARAL Pro-Choice America President Nancy Keenan, who’ll discuss the campaign to defeat Proposition 4, the proposed state constitutional amendment which would require doctors to inform the parent or guardian of a minor 48 hours before providing an abortion to that minor.

Rep. Pete Stark, D-Fremont, will hold forum from 10 a.m. to noon this Saturday, Oct. 18th in the lecture hall of the San Leandro Public Library, at 300 Estudillo Ave., to discuss the state of the economy and what government can or should do now; he’ll be joined by representatives from the banking, labor, and business communities. Stark was the only Bay Area member of Congress to vote against the $700 billion financial-markets bailout both times it came before the House.

And House Education and Labor Committee Chairman George Miller, D-Martinez, will lead a field hearing at 9:30 a.m. next Wednesday, Oct. 22, in the Board of Supervisors’ chamber of San Francisco City Hall, at 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, examining how the current financial crisis is impacting Americans’ retirement security, including pension funds and workers’ directed retirement accounts like 401(k) plans; at a hearing last week on the same topic, the Congressional Budget Office testified American workers have lost at least $2 trillion in retirement savings over past 15 months. Among those scheduled to testify Wednesday are UCLA Anderson School of Management Professor Shlomo Benartzi;
investment advisor Mark Davis, a partner at Kravitz Davis Sansone; and University of California, Berkeley Professor Jacob S. Hacker.

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This week in big-time campaign cash

Topping this week’s roundup of big ($25,000 or more) spenders on California campaigns and committees is Arizona education and communications magnate Peter Sperling‘s $1.75 million Thursday for Proposition 7, which would require California utilities to procure half of their power from renewable resources by 2025. This brings Sperling’s stake in the measure to $9 million so far.

Bob Wilson of Brooklyn, N.Y., gave $1.4 million Tuesday to the campaign for Proposition 5, which would expand state funding and oversight for treatment and rehab programs for nonviolent drug offenders and parolees while reducing criminal penalties and limiting courts’ authority to lock up offenders who violate probation or parole. (This donation double’s Wilson’s prior investment in the measure to a total of $2.8 million so far; I’m pretty sure this Bob Wilson is the same retired hedge fund manager and philanthropist Robert W. Wilson who has given substantially to the campaign against Proposition 8.) Meanwhile, the Police Officers Research Association of Califorina (PORAC) political action committee put up $50,000 Wednesday to oppose Proposition 5.

Natural gas giant Chesapeake Energy of Oklahoma City, Okla., put up $1 million Tuesday to support Proposition 10, a $5 billion bond measure called the California Alternative Fuels Initiative that would provide cash incentives to buyers of certain high-fuel-economy and alternative-fuel vehicles as well as to companies researching and developing renewable energy and cleaner cars.

Ponying up this week for the campaign against Proposition 2 — which would prohibit confinement of certain farm animals in ways that don’t let them turn freely, lie down, stand up and fully extend their limbs — were Demler Enterprises of Wasco, with $182,827.10 Monday; the Demler-owned Pine Hill Egg Ranch of Ramona, with $105,000 Monday; the Washington, D.C.-based American Farm Bureau Federation, with $50,000 Wednesday; Norco Ranch Inc. of Norco, with $35,967.95 Tuesday; and McAnally Enterprises of Norco, with $25,631.74 Tuesday. Meanwhile, the San Francisco-based Caufield Family Foundation gave $50,000 Wednesday and the New York City-based Humane Society of the United States gave another $33,000 Monday to support Proposition 2.

Healthcare supply heir and billionaire philanthropist Jon Stryker of Kalamazoo, Mich., gave $200,000 Wednesday (bringing his total so far to $550,000); UNITE HERE‘s New York City-based issues fund put up $100,000 Saturday; the Oakland-based Service Employees International Union United Health Workers West PAC coughed up $100,000 Wednesday; Jonathan Lewis of Coral Gables, Fla., gave $100,000 Wednesday; “Grey’s Anatomy” star T.R. Knight of New York City sent $50,000 Tuesday; the PAC of SEIU Local 1000, representing state workers, gave $50,000 Wednesday; and firedoglake.com editor Susan McIntosh of Menlo Park gave $30,000 Wednesday for the campaign against Proposition 8, the proposed constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage. Equality California shifted $500,000 it had collected into the main “No on 8” fund Thursday. Meanwhile, Dr. Josephine Templeton of Bryn Mawr, Pa., gave $100,000 Tuesday and Laguna Niguel businessman Richard Jordan gave $25,000 Tuesday to support Proposition 8.

The Democratic State Central Committee of California gave $185,000 Monday to Manuel Perez’s 80th Assembly District campaign; $184,000 Tuesday to Fran Florez’s 30th Assembly District campaign; and $35,960.42 Wednesday to former Assemblywoman Hannah Beth Jackson‘s 19th State Senate District campaign. The Merced County Democratic Central Committee kicked in $60,000 Tuesday to Jackson’s campaign, too, and the San Diego County Democratic Party gave her $50,000 Wednesday. The Yolo County Democratic Central Committee gave $50,000 Wednesday to Assemblywoman Lois Wolk’s 5th State Senate District campaign.

Across the aisle, the California Republican Party gave $100,000 Thursday — after the Republican Central Committee of Orange County had given $30,200 and the Republican Party of Riverside County had given $27,600, both Tuesday — to former Assemblyman Tony Strickland‘s 19th State Senate District campaign. The state GOP also handed over $90,000 today for Gary Jeandron’s 80th Assembly District campaign; the Fresno County Republican Central Committee had given Jeandron $30,000 Tuesday. And Livermore businessman and rancher Robert Rao must’ve had some debt left over from his unsuccessful bid in the 15th Assembly District’s GOP primary, because he put $93,818.19 of his own money into his campaign fund Tuesday.

The construction industry’s California Alliance for Jobs Rebuild California Committee gave $300,000 Thursday to support Proposition 1A, the $10 billion bond measure for high-speed rail.

Crime Victims United of California gave $100,000 Saturday to the campaign for Proposition 6, a tough-on-crime package including adult prosecution for gang-related criminals 14 and up; annual criminal background checks for public housing residents; harsher bail conditions and penalties for certain crimes; and so on. Meanwhile, the California School Employees Association‘s political action committee put up $50,000 Tuesday to the joint campaign against Proposition 6 and Proposition 9, the latter of which would expand crime victims’ rights including restitution.

Children’s Hospital Los Angeles gave $107,900 Tuesday and the UCSF Foundation in San Francisco gave $35,000 Saturday to support Proposition 3, the Children’s Hospital Bond Act, which would authorize almost $1 billion in bonds to be repaid from state’s General Fund to pay for construction, expansion, remodeling, renovation, furnishing and equipping of children’s hospitals. Also, the California Association of Hospitals and Health Systems dumped $83,333 into its own issues fund Wednesday, presumably on its way somewhere else… wanna bet where?

Venture capitalist Vinod Khosla of Portola Valley gave $50,000 Wednesday and Judith Koch of Mountain View gave $25,000 Tuesday to oppose Proposition 4, the proposed state constitutional amendment which would require doctors to inform the parent or guardian of a minor 48 hours before providing an abortion to that minor.

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This week in big-time campaign cash

Topping this week’s roundup of big ($25,000 or more) spenders on California campaigns and committees is the $4 million that T. Boone Pickens‘ Seal Beach-based Clean Energy put Wednesday into the campaign for Proposition 10, a $5 billion bond measure called the California Alternative Fuels Initiative that would provide cash incentives to buyers of certain high-fuel-economy and alternative-fuel vehicles as well as to companies researching and developing renewable energy and cleaner cars. This was Pickens’ idea; he stands to make a bundle from it; and his company has put up about $7 million of the almost $7.75 million collected for the campaign to date.

Next up is the $2 million that Arizona education and communications magnate Peter Sperling sank Monday into the campaign for Proposition 7, which would require California utilities to procure half of their power from renewable resources by 2025. This brings Sperling’s stake in the measure to $7.25 million so far.

Lots of money continued to roll in this week for the campaign against Proposition 8, the proposed constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage. Healthcare supply heir and billionaire philanthropist Jon Stryker of Kalamazoo, Mich., gave $350,000 Wednesday; International Flavors and Fragrances heir and philanthropist Henry Van Ameringen gave $100,000 Tuesday while the Democratic State Central Committee of California gave $100,000 Wednesday; the Proteus Fund’s Civil Marriage Collaborative of Amherst, Mass., gave $80,000 Monday; the Human Rights Campaign PAC gave $75,000 Tuesday; billionaire Dreamworks CEO David Geffen gave $50,000 Monday; and it was $25,000 each from bank president’s wife and retiree Mary Judith Meelia of Walpole, Mass., on Monday, the San Diego-based Center Advocacy Project Issues PAC on Tuesday, Good Green Home founder and CEO John Barabino of Chevy Chase, Md., on Tuesday, and Bubble Factory founder and film producer Sid Sheinberg of Beverly Hills on Wednesday. There’s also a $50,000 contribution listed as coming in Wednesday from Fall Out Boy of Point Richmond — is this the Chicago-area pop-punk band, and if so, why the East Bay address? Elsewhere, Equality California moved $500,000 Tuesday and Californians Against Elimination of Basic Rights moved $100,000 Friday of the money they’d collected into a central No on 8 account. Meanwhile, J. Cliff Johnson of Yuba City gave $25,000 Sunday to support Proposition 8.

The Democratic State Central Committee of California was busy this week, putting another $210,676.40 Monday into Manuel Perez‘s 80th Assembly District campaign; $164,500 Thursday to Fran Florez’s campaign for the 30th Assembly District; $80,000 Tuesday into former Assemblywoman Hannah Beth Jackson‘s 19th State Senate District campaign; $41,248.14 Tuesday into Marty Block‘s 78th Assembly District campaign; and $33,886.68 Monday into Assemblywoman Lois Wolk‘s 8th State Senate District campaign. Meanwhile, the a different California Democratic Party account gave $30,000 Tuesday to Joan Buchanan‘s 15th Assembly District campaign.

On the other side of the aisle, the California Republican Party gave $250,000 today to former Assemblyman Tony Strickland‘s 19th State Senate District campaign. Republican Bill Berryhill put $100,000 of his own money into his 26th Assembly District campaign Monday, and the Fresno County Republican Central Committee did pony up $116,675 Thursday for Gary Jeandron‘s 80th Assembly District campaign.

Childrens Hospital Los Angeles anted up $435,000 Wednesday for Proposition 3, the Children’s Hospital Bond Act, which would authorize almost $1 billion in bonds to be repaid from state’s General Fund to pay for construction, expansion, remodeling, renovation, furnishing and equipping of children’s hospitals.

Planned Parenthood of San Diego and Riverside Counties gave $150,000 while Concord-based Planned Parenthood Shasta-Diablo gave $100,000 Tuesday and the Democratic State Central Committee of California gave $100,000 Wednesday to the campaign against Proposition 4, the proposed state constitutional amendment which would require doctors to inform the parent or guardian of a minor 48 hours before providing an abortion to that minor. The Sacramento-based Campaign for Teen Health and Safety moved $200,000 of what it has collected against Proposition 4 into Planned Parenthood’s No on 4 account. Meanwhile, Irvine attorney Timothy R. Busch‘s Lenawee Trust gave $25,000 today to support Proposition 4.

Egg producer Moark LLC of Norco gave $280,803.20 today to oppose Proposition 2, which would prohibit confinement of certain farm animals in ways that don’t let them turn freely, lie down, stand up and fully extend their limbs. In support of Proposition 2, retired hedge fund manager Michelle Thomson of Philadelphia gave another $25,000 Sunday and Houston entrepreneur and investor William W. Nicholson, a former Amway executive and Ford Administration official, gave $25,000 Monday.

Gap Inc. chairman Emeritus Donald G. Fisher of San Francisco gave $100,000 Monday to support Proposition 11, the legislative redistricting reform measure.

Crime Victims United of California gave $100,000 Monday to support Proposition 9, which would expand crime victims’ rights including restitution.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) gave $30,200 and the California Council of Laborers PAC gave $25,000 today to the Merced County Democratic Central Committee.

My nomination for mystery contribution of the week is the $50,000 that former Los Angeles Mayor, 2002 GOP gubernatorial primary candidate and former California Secretary of Education Richard Riordan gave Tuesday to Protecting California’s Children. That’s a Los Angeles-based, statewide ballot-measure committee which said in its initial filing that it supports increased funding for foster care and child-welfare programs; it had collected only $2,500 earlier, so this marks a sudden money infusion.

STV Inc., a Rancho Cucamonga-based engineering, architectural and planning firm, gave $30,000 Tuesday to support Proposition 1A, the $10 billion bond measure for high-speed rail.

And the Lakeside-based Barona Band of Mission Indians gave $25,000 Thursday to the campaign against Proposition 5, which would expand state funding and oversight for treatment and rehab programs for nonviolent drug offenders and parolees while reducing criminal penalties and limiting courts’ authority to lock up offenders who violate probation or parole.