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In Opposition to Proposition 15

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By Hardy L. Brown –

This week, the California Black Media owners met with supporters of Proposition 15 and they made some valid arguments to support their position.

They referenced Arizona State Representative Leah Landrum, who used the Public Finance option they were supporting to make their point. So I called Arizona State Senator Cloves Campbell who just opted out of the public campaign program. The same is true for Senator Landrum and both of them are African Americans from the state of Arizona. Rep. Campbell said a public financing law like Proposition 15 sounds good, but that is the same program that has elected so many extremists in Arizona to allow the controversial illegal immigration law and other anti civil rights bills that are working their way through the legislature.

They claim it is the will of the people, but it is many of these elected officials who are passing these laws. Rep. Campbell said the immigration law can be triggered if your yard is uncut or a car is parked on the lawn. “That could be grounds for officials to enter your house and conduct a search for illegal immigrants.

And now that we have Blacks from other countries here in Phoenix I could be stopped and asked for papers of citizenship,” said Rep. Campbell. We can see California moving in the direction of Arizona with the passage of Proposition 15 and the Black community suffering worst of all. How many Blacks do you know will have the time or money to pay people to get 7,500 signatures and collect $5 dollars from them to run for office? Usually, these people get paid to collect signatures even though they do not fully understand the reason behind the cause. I have nothing against people who gather signatures, but the practice can be manipulated by people wanting to get into office with public money.

Rep. Campbell said Prop 15 benefits people who are new or not known in the community. He said he refused the funding because of the constraints. It also provokes signature problems. Some of the elected officials who are not familiar with the process won the seats and were kicked out because of technicalities.

Reporting processes are more rigorous and the restrictions on what you do with the money doesn't even allow you to donate to a church.

Nothing in this bill will prevent the rich or well connected from seeking office the way they currently do.

Remember, term limits were placed to give access to people seeking office, and we are in worse shape than we have ever been because of it. It was for these reasons and others that Rep. Campbell and Senator Landrum opted out of public financing and went back to the traditional fund raising techniques.

If you think that a rich extremist is bad for public office, wait until you get a poor, uneducated, misinformed extremist elected doing the will of the people.

Therefore I am sticking with my original position of NO on 15.


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0 # Guest 2010-05-27 13:02
I have to respectfully disagree. I want to highlight what seems to me the essence of your argument: "How many Blacks do you know will have the time or money to pay people to get 7,500 signatures and collect $5 dollars from them to run for office?"

The answer: more than have the money and connections to run for office the traditional way! That's what Prop 15 is all about.

I strongly agree that the new Arizona immigration law is unfortunate and misguided. But I simply don't think we can expect to see this type of law passed in CA as a result of public financing.

No, I think Prop 15 will REDUCE extremism in state government--the extremism that comes from pandering to corporate special interest donors. That's why I'm supporting Prop 15, and I hope other readers here will join me in voting yes.

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