The California Nurses Association, which antagonized Republican Meg Whitman with its relentless "Queen Meg" parody during the 2010 gubernatorial campaign, is back for a second act - this time poking fun at wealthy people opposing Gov. Jerry Brown's November ballot initiative to raise taxes.
The influential union, in a campaign to paint tax opponents as "bungling billionaires," will stage a skit on Tuesday at the St. Francis Yacht Club in San Francisco. The union promised reporters a "colorful event," with visuals including life rings and a model yacht.
The appeal of the spectacle notwithstanding, the label may be difficult for the union to stick. Though donors to the campaign committee opposing Brown's Proposition 30 appear to include at least one billionaire - Forbes magazine has Charles Johnson of Franklin Resources Inc., on its list - the campaign's fundraising has been anemic: Opponents of the tax increase have raised less altogether than the nurses association gave Brown's side in a single $1 million check.
Michael Lighty, a spokesman for the union, said the imagery isn't supposed to be precise. Rather, he said, it is to "discourage others from contributing."
Brown, a Democrat, is proposing to raise the state sales tax and income taxes on California's highest earners.
PHOTO CREDIT: Elaine Burn, of Los Angeles, arrives in her "Queen Meg For California 2010" as part of the California Nurses Association parallel satire campaign. The Sacramento Bee/Hector Amezcua