5 things to know: California’s plastic bag vote
Some prominent California figures solidified their stances on ballot measures on Thursday, while others remained quiet.
On Tuesday, the California Secretary of State released its preliminary voter guide that will ultimately be mailed to all voting households. It included signed statements from each side of the 17 measures that are slated to appear on the ballot on Nov. 8.
Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, an outspoken advocate of Proposition 64 to legalize recreational marijuana, did not sign the argument in favor of the initiative. Spokesman Jason Kinney noted the argument mentions Newsom’s support, adding that the pro-pot campaign “wanted to showcase the largest and most diverse coalition of support ever assembled for a measure on this issue.”
U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who had announced her opposition to legalized marijuana, signed the argument against the measure.
Newsom, a candidate for California governor, signed the argument in support of the gun control initiative he has championed, and Feinstein joined him.
A potential rival for Newsom in the gubernatorial race, former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, signed in opposition of a measure that would expedite the implementation of the death penalty.
Villaraigosa supported an unsuccessful 2012 measure that would have abolished the death penalty. He did not sign Proposition 62 on the ballot this year, which would replace the death penalty with life in prison without parole.
State Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, signed an argument against Proposition 60, which would mandate condom use in California’s pornography industry.
John Laird, the California Secretary for Natural Resources, signed in support of upholding a statewide ban on single-use carryout plastic bags. His title was listed on the ballot guide as Chairperson of the California Ocean Protection Council.
Sacramento officials also weighed in. Former Sacramento County Sheriff John McGinness signed in support of Proposition 53, which would require voter approval for some projects that would cost more than $2 billion. The initiative could complicate the governor’s Delta tunnels water conveyance project. Sacramento City Councilman Steve Hansen signed a rebuttal to the opponents of Proposition 54, which would require the California Legislature to have bills in print for three days before taking a final vote.
U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, who the Bee previously reported was leaning towards supporting the legalization initiative, did not sign either side on Proposition 64 or any of the other ballot measures. She is leaving office after this year, ending a 24-year run in the Senate.
Perhaps the state’s most popular elected official, Gov. Jerry Brown, signed just one argument – in favor of the criminal justice measure he’s pushing, Proposition 57.