News Panel: Campaign Finance, Politics of Education Tax Propositions, Genetically Modified Food, and more
The influx of money from outside California on local races and statewide campaigns could greatly influence government and policy. Contributions from an Arizona non-profit, called Americans for Responsible Leadership, which is funding ads in support of Prop. 32 and opposed to Prop. 30, raise questions about the role of third party financing and loopholes in California's campaign finance laws.
Gov. Brown's Proposition 30, which would raise taxes to provide funding for public education, is being attacked from the political left and right by a pair of wealthy siblings, Molly and Charles Munger, who have spent tens of millions of dollars opposing Proposition 30. Molly Munger, a civil rights attorney from Pasadena who is offering an alternative public education tax measure, Proposition 38, recently pulled a controversial attack ad. Conservative Stanford physicist Chuck Munger opposes any new taxes.
If approved by voters, Proposition 37 would make California the first state to require labeling on all genetically modified foods and would prevent those foods from being called "natural." Opponents of the measure include farmers, concerned over a potential spike in food costs -- and large corporations like Nestle and Coca-Cola, which have been fighting both state and federal legislation since GMOs were introduced 18 years ago. Some supporters are nutrition activists, who feel that all genetically modified products should be identified for consumers.
- Corey Cook, University of San Francisco
- Josh Richman, Bay Area News Group
- Lisa Krieger, San Jose Mercury News
Also on KQED.org this week ...
Drought Watch 2015: Record-Low Sierra Snowpack
The Sierra Nevada snowpack, which typically supplies nearly a third of California's water, is showing the lowest water content on record: 6 percent of the long-term average for April 1. That shatters last year's low-water mark of 25 percent (tied with 1977).
"Boomtown" History of the San Francisco Bay Area
KQED's "Boomtown" series will seek to identify what is happening in real time in the current boom, and also draw out the causes and possible solutions to the conflicts and pressures between the old and the new.