Proposition 28 Defeated In a Landslide
LOS ANGELES, March 7 /PRNewswire/ -- California voters overwhelmingly defeated Proposition 28, which would have repealed Prop 10 -- the 50-cent tobacco tax passed in 1998.
``Tonight's landslide victory sends an unmistakable message to the tobacco industry -- our children are more important than your profits,'' said Rob Reiner, the Chair of the No on Prop 28 campaign.
In 1998, Rob Reiner -- a longtime children's advocate -- authored and was the chief proponent of Prop 10, which taxed cigarettes an additional 50-cents to fund programs that benefit California's children and families. Prop 10 was passed by California voters, despite a $30 million campaign funded by the tobacco industry.
``California is the bellwether state,'' said Reiner. ``Tonight's results shows the rapidly growing support for investing in young children both in California and across the nation.''
A major tobacco retailer put Prop 28 on the ballot to repeal Prop 10. The measure would have eliminated nearly $700 million a year from programs that benefit California's children and families, including:
Healthcare for children;
Preschool education opportunities and quality childcare;
Smoking prevention for pregnant women and parents of young children;
Helping mothers care for themselves and their babies during pregnancy and infancy.
A bipartisan grassroots coalition including children's advocates, law enforcement, anti-smoking activists, and organized labor was formed to defeat this tobacco industry initiative. In addition to organizing support in all 58 counties, the campaign also utilized a major Internet advertising campaign.
``Of course, it would have been preferable to not face another fight so soon after the passage of Prop 10,'' said Reiner. ``However, we have built a strong, bipartisan coalition that will outlive this campaign and continue to fight for California's children and families.''
Prop 28 was opposed by leading health, education, and community groups, including the AARP, California Labor Federation AFL-CIO, American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, American Lung Association, California Federation of Teachers, California Medical Association, California Nurses Association, California School Boards Association, California State Association of Counties, California State PTA, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, Child Care Resource & Referral Network, Children Now, Children's Defense Fund, Latino Coalition for a Healthy California, Para Los Ninos Child Development Center, and Wu Yee Children's Services.