Wealthy attorney Molly Munger is phasing out her ad critical of Gov. Jerry Brown's tax initiative, her campaign said.
Munger formed a committee earlier this month to point out flaws in Brown's Proposition 30, which raises $6 billion in taxes on wealthy earners and sales to help the state budget and schools. She launched a 30-second ad last week that called Brown's campaign misleading and depicted politicians taking money from a schoolhouse.
The statewide ad, backed by nearly $5 million in new donations from Munger, sent chills through education groups and labor unions supporting Brown's initiative. Many leaders called on Munger to drop her ad, including state Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson, who is supporting both measures.
"We made our point, and now we're moving on," said Proposition 38 spokesman Nathan Ballard. "This isn't the No on 30 campaign. It's the Yes on 38 campaign. We listened to our allies, and we will continue to listen to our allies."
Munger's own initiative, Proposition 38, generates $10 billion annually by hiking income taxes on all but low-income earners, most going to K-12 schools and early childhood programs but also assisting the state budget. The $7 billion for education would go to schools and programs directly rather than through the state budget process.
Munger said last week she believed the governor was being deceptive and employing an "impostor strategy" by having his campaign suggest Proposition 30 would bypass Sacramento. She told KXTV News 10 today that she was pulling the ad "to show respect for both groups of voters that make up our coalition."
Ballard said he couldn't predict whether the campaign would avoid any further negative ads. "We have no plans to run ads other than the one sent today. We're not going to commit to the content of ads in two weeks' time because this is a political campaign where the landscape changes rapidly underfoot."
To replace its previous ad, the Proposition 38 campaign is running a new spot promoting new funding for schools with a mention that "Sacramento can't touch it," the only nod to Proposition 30.