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A group seeking to ask California voters to repeal the death penalty has netted nearly $1.2 million in recent weeks to aid its drive to qualify for the 2012 ballot.

The contributions, made to a committee created to fund the proposed ballot measure, were reported this week in campaign finance filings posted on the secretary of state website.

Major donors listed in the report include several California branches of the American Civil Liberties Union ($41,770), Google executive Robert Alan Eustace ($125,000), Hyatt Development Corporation CEO Nicholas Pritzker ($500,000), and Netflix CEO Reed Hastings ($125,000).

Supporters of the proposed measure, which would replace the death penalty with life imprisonment without parole, must collect 504,760 valid voter signatures by March 19 to secure a spot on the November ballot. They've argued that the change, which would apply retroactively to inmates currently on death row, would free up tens of millions of dollars that could be used for law enforcement, education and other state spending needs.


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