No on Prop 16 Leads Again in Statewide Poll

Campaign Releases Fundraising Report; Californians Continue to Reject Racial Preferences Despite Massive Spending by Fat Cats and Special Interests

SAN DIEGO, CA—October 22, 2020—Californians for Equal Rights, the NO on Prop 16 campaign, continues to lead in the latest statewide opinion poll less than two weeks before Election Day. The Public Policy Institute of California reports that its October survey shows that likely voters reject Proposition 16 by a majority, with 50 percent saying they would vote no, 37 percent saying they would vote yes, and 12 percent undecided.

On the California ballot this November, Prop 16 seeks to amend the State Constitution by deleting the provision—adopted by voters in 1996 as Proposition 209—that prohibits racial discrimination and racial preferences in public contracting, public education, and public employment.

Despite misleading ballot label language from Attorney General Javier Becerra tipping the scale for Prop 16, the campaign nonetheless has failed to convince Californians that it is anything but a divisive, unnecessary measure seeking to return the state to a backward, bygone era. Even Prop 16’s massive fundraising has been unable to alter that reality.

The NO on Prop 16 campaign today released its public fundraising filing, again highlighting that it is supported by an army of small-dollar donors. It reports having amassed over 7,000 donors and raising over $1.47 million, with contributions coming from everyday citizens who give what they can to defend equality.

By contrast, Prop 16 has received big money from out-of-touch billionaires and grubby special interests. Here is a partial list of those that have lined up to help dismantle equality in California:

  • Amidst an unprecedented pandemic, the Kaiser Family Foundation and Blue Shield of California spent $1.5 million and $500,000, respectively, on promoting racial discrimination and preferences instead of devoting those resources to Californians’ health.
  • Pacific Gas & Energy (PG&E) donated $250,000. PG&E’s incompetence has led directly to, or exacerbated, wildfires and blackouts in California.
  • Quinn Delaney, wife of a real-estate tycoon, contributed $6.5 million; Steve Ballmer, former COO of Microsoft and current owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, and his wife donated $1 million.
  • The Open Society Policy Center, a George Soros outfit pushing left-wing causes, contributed $1 million.
  • Patricia Quillin, wife of Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, donated $1 million; Salesforce contributed $375,000; the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative donated $100,000 — all examples of Silicon Valley money being used to pursue the Left’s racial-grievance agenda.

A grand total of 49 donors have each donated $50,000 or more (in most cases, much more) to the YES on Prop 16 campaign, making up more than 95% of its total raised. By contrast, the NO campaign has only a single $50,000 donor, the nonprofit group Students for Fair Admissions; this donation makes up 3.4% of the total raised.

Unfortunately, all the big money of Prop 16 could not purchase a sense of irony. Shamelessly, the campaign has declared on its website that “a few wealthy donors are trying to use race to divide us. If we commit to rejecting their tactics and pushing for a truly equitable future, we can make history by coming together.” Don’t laugh—this language appears under a section called “Facts,” unwittingly calling into question the remaining “Facts” on the same page.

Fortunately, all of that money cannot purchase voter support either. As the latest PPIC poll indicates, Californians see through Prop 16’s massive misinformation campaign and will once again defend equality under the law this November.