A shadowy Phoenix-based group contributed $11 million Monday to a campaign committee funding attacks on Gov. Jerry Brown's tax initiative and supporting a measure curbing union dues collection, a new campaign finance report shows.
Americans for Responsible Leadership gave the donation to Small Business Action Committee PAC, which is backing Proposition 32 and opposing Proposition 30. Before the latest contribution, the PAC had been heavily reliant on more than $20 million from Charles Munger Jr.
A spokeswoman for the Small Business Action Committee said she didn't know where Americans for Responsible Leadership got its money.
"They are an organization that has seen over the last several weeks that we've been leading the fight No on 30, Yes on 32, and apparently they just decided to contribute," said Beth Miller, spokeswoman for the Small Business Action Committee PAC.
She said she did not know anything beyond that about Americans for Responsible Leadership, other than that "it's a legitimate group." Asked whether the money is meant principally to support Prop. 32 or oppose Prop. 30, Miller said, "We don't reveal our strategy."
Americans for Responsible Leadership's website focuses on opposition to Arizona initiatives for a sales tax extension and a "top-two" primary. The Arizona Capitol Times described the group as a "conservative independent expenditure group."
Proposition 32 would restrict how unions collect dues for political activity, while Proposition 30 is Gov. Jerry Brown's initiative raising taxes on upper-income earners and sales in California.