The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

October 24, 2012
Union contributions push No on Prop. 32 money past $60 million

With two weeks remaining before Election Day, the donations to the labor-backed campaign committee to defeat Proposition 32 have reached $61 million.

Unions have made killing the measure their top priority, worried that if it becomes law that its ban on money from payroll deductions for political activities would handcuff their influence by choking off their sole source of funding.

The top three contributors to the anti-32 campaign have given half the money raised so far: the California Teachers Association ($20.1 million), Service Employees International Union ($8.8 million) and American Federation of State,County and Municipal Employees ($3.8 million).

Proposition 32 also bans corporations from using payroll deductions to fund politics, but since they raise their money through other means -- company treasuries and executive contributions -- measure would have little impact on their political resources.

The committee backing the measure has received $4.2 million from individual donors. But the real action has shifted to the Small Business Action Committee PAC, which set up a committee that both supports Proposition 32 and opposes Gov. Jerry Brown's tax proposal, Proposition 30.

The business group has received $29.3 million, with $16 million coming from Republican activist Charles Munger Jr. and $11 million from an Arizona nonprofit, Americans for Responsible Leadership, that hasn't disclosed the source of its money.

These tables detail the money backing and opposing Proposition 32 as reported to the California Secretary of State. Tabs at the bottom of the spreadsheet toggle to the different accounts:

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About The State Worker

Jon Ortiz The Author

Jon Ortiz launched The State Worker blog and a companion column in 2008 to cover state government from the perspective of California government employees. Every day he filters the news through a single question: "What does this mean for state workers?" Join Ortiz for updates and debate on state pay, benefits, pensions, contracts and jobs. Contact him at (916) 321-1043 and at


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