Constitutional Right to Reproductive Freedom. Legislative Constitutional Amendment
On the Ballot: Amends California Constitution to expressly include an individual’s fundamental right to reproductive freedom, which includes the fundamental right to choose to have an abortion and the fundamental right to choose or refuse contraceptives. This amendment does not narrow or limit the existing rights to privacy and equal protection under the California Constitution.
Background: This proposed measure that looks to enshrine in the state’s constitution the right to abortion and contraception follows the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision this June to overturn Roe v. Wade—the long-standing SCOTUS ruling that found the U.S. Constitutional protection to privacy included the right to an abortion. Under state law, abortions are legal in California up to fetal viability (roughly 24 weeks). Abortions can be performed after the age of viability only if the pregnancy poses a health risk to the mother. Currently, the California Constitution guarantees the right to privacy. Though the Constitution doesn’t explicitly define what’s included in that protection, the California Supreme Court previously found that such protection includes reproductive rights on abortions and whether to use contraceptives.
What Supporters Say: Those advocating for the constitutional amendment argue that doing so would unquestionably protect a person’s right to an abortion, prevent it from being up to interpretation and make reproductive rights a health care issue rather than a political one.
What Opponents Say: Groups such as the No on Prop 1 Committee argue that a woman’s right to choose an abortion is already protected in the California Constitution and that the amendment would give politicians more power of health care policies. The California Catholic Conference further argues that the language in the measure is too broad and unrestrictive, protecting late-term abortions.
Allows In-Person Roulette, Dice Games, Sports Wagering on Tribal Lands. Initiative Constitutional Amendment and Statute.
On the Ballot: Also allows sports wagering at certain horseracing tracks, private lawsuits to enforce certain gambling laws. Directs revenues to General Fund, problem-gambling programs, enforcement.
Background: Proposition 26 is one of two ballot initiatives with a focus on sports wagering. Prop 26 focuses on in-person wagering with the addition of roulette and dice games, all of which would be conducted at Native American Indian casinos. Sports betting would be conducted on a wide range of athletic events, with exceptions for high school sports and California college teams. Financially, this would potentially raise tens of millions of dollars annually from 10% of the profits from sports betting at racetracks. Of that generated revenue, 15% would go to problem gambling prevention and mental health, 15% would go to enforcement, and 70% would go to the General Fund. Supporters for Prop 26 include 25 American Indian tribes and the San Diego Police Officers Association. Opponents for Prop 26 include several corporate casinos and the Republican Party of California.
What Supporters Say: Proposition 26 offers responsible, safe, regulated and experienced locations for Californians to participate in new gambling activities.
What Opponents Say: Proposition 26 does not benefit residents or local communities and expands the tax-free monopoly of tribal casinos on gaming.
Allows Online and Mobile Sports Wagering Outside Tribal Lands. Initiative Constitutional Amendment and Statute.
On the Ballot: Allows Indian tribes and affiliated businesses to operate online/mobile sports wagering outside tribal lands. Directs revenues to regulatory costs, homelessness programs, nonparticipating tribes.
Background: Proposition 27 is the second ballot initiative to focus on sports wagering, with a specific focus of online or mobile betting. Prop 27 says it would authorize gaming tribes and online sports betting or qualified gaming companies with agreements with gaming tribes to operate online sports betting outside Indian lands. Betting on youth sports would be prohibited. Of the possible hundreds of millions of dollars generated by fees and taxes, 85% of the revenues would go toward permanent and interim housing for the homeless and mental health support, and 15% would go to the Tribal Economic Development Account. Supporters include Major League Baseball, three American Indian tribes and the mayors of Fresno, Long Beach, Oakland and Sacramento. Opponents include the state Democratic and Republican parties, five American Indian tribes, the state Senate and Assembly minority leaders and lieutenant governor.
What Supporters Say: Proposition 27 is an important step toward combating homelessness in California and would provide a regulated and sustainable source of funding for those programs.
What Opponents Say: Proposition 27 will only benefit out-of-state gambling corporations and harm the rights of California tribes, which have provided trusted and responsible gambling limited to in-person locations.
Provides Additional Funding for Arts and Music Education in Public Schools. Initiative Statute.
On the Ballot: Provides additional funding from state General Fund for arts and music education in all K-12 public schools (including charter schools).
Background: Proposition 28 would establish a minimum amount of funding for K-12 public school arts education programs from what was already established by Proposition 98 in 1988. That original proposition guaranteed either a minimum of 40% of the General Fund on K-14 education, plus or a minimum guarantee based on student attendance and change of cost of living. This year’s Prop 28 would guarantee a minimum of 1% of funding received from Prop 98, which would go specifically toward arts education programs. Proposition 28 would increase state costs by $800 million to $1 billion annually. Supporters for Proposition 28 include Los Angeles Clippers owner and former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Universal Music Group, the Superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District, the United States Secretary of Education and the California Teachers Association.
What Supporters Say: Proposition 28 would open up opportunities for low-income and diverse communities to benefit children with access and equity in art and music education.
What Opponents Say: No official opposition has been presented against Proposition 28.
Requires On-Site Licensed Medical Professional at Kidney Dialysis Clinics and Establishes Other State Requirements, Initiative Statute
On the Ballot: Requires physician, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant on-site during treatment. Requires clinics to disclose physicians’ ownership interests; report infection data.
Background: If passed by voters, Prop 29 would impose a series of new staffing and reporting requirements on dialysis clinics, which perform treatment for patients who have developed kidney failure. Clinics would be required to have a physician, nurse practitioner or a physician assistant on-site during treatment hours; periodically report dialysis-related infection information to the California Department of Public Health; disclose to patients and CDPH a list of all physicians who have an ownership stake of a least 5%; get CDPH’s approval prior to closing or substantially reducing patient services. Prop 29 marks the third attempt in as many elections to change dialysis centers in California. Like Prop 29, Proposition 23 in 2020 intended to require clinics to have at least one licensed physician during patient treatments and to report data on dialysis-related infections. That proposal failed, with 63.42% of voters opposed. Proposition 8 in 2018, which failed with 59% of voters against it, would have required clinics to pay refunds to patients if their profits exceeded 115% of the costs of direct patient care and health care improvements.
What Supporters Say: Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West, the labor union pushing Prop 29—as well as Props 23 and 8 before that—claims the additional staff would help improve quality of care. Through the prop, the union intends to reform the industry and promote more transparency
What Opponents Say: Those against the latest proposition, including Stop Yet Another Dangerous Dialysis Proposition, which raised millions of dollars in contributions from dialysis companies, argue that it’s a solution in search of a problem; there’s no clear evidence services are inadequate; the unions are using the measure to pressure clinics and organize workers.
Provides Funding for Programs to Reduce Air Pollution and Prevent Wildfires by Increasing Tax on Personal Income over $2 Million. Initiative Statute.
On the Ballot: Allocates tax revenues to zero-emission vehicle purchase incentives, vehicle charging stations and wildfire prevention.
Background: Proposition 30 would increase income tax on incomes over $2 million by 1.75%, and the increase would continue until 2043 or if there are three consecutive years after 2030 with statewide emissions reduced by 80% of 1990 levels. Income tax for those individuals over $2 million is currently 13.3%. The tax revenue would be put into a clean air trust fund with the money divided up into sub-funds. From the trust, 35% would go to an investment plan for zero-emission vehicle infrastructure, 45% would go to the Zero-Emission Vehicle and Clean Mobility Sub-Fund, and the other 20% would go to the Wildfire Green House Gas Emissions Reduction Sub-Funds. The sub-funds would also fund the hiring and training of firefighters. Supporters include ride-share corporation Lyft and the California Democratic Party. Opponents include Gov. Gavin Newsom and the Republican Party of California.
What Supporters Say: Proposition 30 will put more zero-emission vehicles on the road earlier than expected, which will help the fight against pollution and climate change, and put that responsibility on those able to afford it.
What Opponents Say: Proposition 30 will raise taxes in a state that already has some of the highest taxes in the country and benefits special interests, specifically those of supporting corporation Lyft, where the state has already committed $10 billion to electric vehicles and infrastructure.
Referendum on 2020 Law that Would Prohibit the Retail Sale of Certain Flavored Tobacco Products
On the Ballot: A “Yes” vote approves, and a “No” vote rejects, a 2020 law prohibiting retail sale of certain flavored tobacco products.
Background: In 2020, Gov. Gavin Newsom enacted Senate Bill 793, a bipartisan measure banning the sale of most flavored tobacco products, which has been popular for teens. Following SB 793’s signing, opponents petitioned to let California’s voters decide whether the ban should go into effect or overturn the policy. Under Prop 31, flavored tobacco products would be defined as that which has a flavor, apart from regular tobacco flavor, such as fruit, mint or vanilla, among other things. Stores or owners of vending machines that sell flavored tobacco could face a $250 penalty for each violation.
What Supporters Say: Supporters of the policy—including the American Lung Association, American Heart Association, and labor unions such as the California Teachers Association—claim that the tobacco industry has long targeted teens to purchase its products and believe the ban would help prevent underage tobacco use.
What Opponents Say: Tobacco advocacy groups, along with the California Republican Party, oppose the proposition on the basis that the policy would ban the sale of flavored tobacco to all California customers, including those legally old enough to purchase such products. Acknowledging that children shouldn’t be allowed to purchase tobacco—which is already illegal—the opponents believe restrictions can be achieved without prohibiting products to adults.
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