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Part VII: Prop 87 and its Opponents' Deceptive Tactics

Oil companies have remained in the shadows and have been touting their "broad coalition" against Prop. 87. It's all a sham.
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Sen. Feinstein Blasts Deceptive Big Oil Mailer

Over the past few days we've been telling you about a widely distributed private slate mailer labeled "Voter Information Guide for Democrats," boasting of "evaluations and recommendations" by the Democratic Party and others. The fine print notes that the slate mailer was prepared by Voter Information Guide, "not an official political party organization." The oil companies put up $300,000 for this deceptive mailer.

Today, the Oakland Tribune reported that, "U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein wants a Southern California company to stop distributing a slate mailer that uses her image but encourages votes which contradict her stances. Neither Feinstein, D-Calif., nor her campaign approved the "Voter Information Guide for Democrats" showing up in mailboxes across California."

The oil companies' ads talk about the "experts" and organizations who are against Prop. 87. But it's all a sham front for the oil companies. Check out this video, which shows the web of connections between the oil companies' experts and the amount of money they've paid to confuse voters.

Help us spread the word about how the oil companies' No on 87 campaign is trying to confuse voters and buy this election.

Here's the full article from the Oakland Times about the oil companies shameful tactics:
[full article's content]

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HOW MUCH DOES A SHAM COALITION COST?

"Californians Against Higher Taxes, No on 87" is a creation of and is bankrolled by the oil companies. Oil companies have remained in the shadows and have been touting their "broad coalition," joining their "economists" who are against Prop. 87. It's all a sham. Let's take a look at their coalition and follow the money:

California NAACP: The oil companies' "No on 87" campaign paid $15,000 to a PAC controlled by CA NAACP President Alice Huffman. Read the Capitol Weekly and the LA Times to see how she has also taken hundreds of thousands of dollars from tobacco companies, pharmaceutical companies and telecommunications companies and pushed their agendas through the CA NAACP.
NAACP's Huffman assailed for tobacco, telecom payments, Shane Goldmacher, Capitol Weekly, 10/12/06 http://www.capitolweekly.net/news/article.html?article_id=1041

Public Safety: LA Times: "The oil industry, fighting the Proposition 87 oil tax, has paid $35,000 to Aaron Read. Read heads one of Sacramento's top lobbying firms, representing police and firefighters unions. Police officers and firefighters are featured prominently in the No-on-87 campaign..." (UPDATE: Since this LA Times story, the reported total to Read is now $43,478)
The oil companies' campaign has also paid PORAC, the Peace Officers Research Association of California, $200,000, and paid $168,000 to the California State Firefighters Association. Total: $403,000.
Money talks when topic is ballot endorsements, Dan Morain, LA Times, 10/22/06 http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-me-spokesmodel22oct22,1,6781568.story?coll=la-headlines-politics

California Chamber of Commerce: Almost $350,000 in recent payments to its PAC from oil companies. The California Chamber Board of Directors is a hit parade of big oil executives: including the Regional Operations Manager of Shell Oil Company, the President of Chevron Corporation ($30 million against Prop. 87), a BP Vice President and the piece de resistance, Chamber Immediate Past Chair Eugene Voiland, the President and CEO of Aera Energy, the Exxon/Shell joint venture that has dumped more than $32 million into the anti-Prop. 87 war chest. In addition, Steven Merksamer, Senior Partner of Nielsen, Merksamer, Parrinello, Mueller & Naylor, LLP, which has been paid $520,000 by the oil companies' No campaign, is also on the board. The No on 87 Treasurer is a Merksamer firm partner.
California Secretary of State
California Chamber Web site

$72,000 for the CA Hispanic Chamber of Commerce: Its chief lobbyist, Roy Perez, has received $72,000 from the oil companies' No on 87 campaign. Perez recently spoke as a representative of the CA Hispanic Chamber at a Sacramento press conference against Prop. 87. He did not disclose that he was appearing as a paid performer.
California Secretary of State
"Economists": Remember those ads featuring three "economists" making the case against Prop. 87? Two are on the oil company payroll and the third fabricated an academic credential. Here are the facts:
1) William Hamm: Identified using a title he hasn't held for 20 years; almost $95,000 from the oil companies' No on 87 committee.
2) Phillip Romero: Identified by the Sacramento Bee as being paid by the oil companies' No on 87 campaign.
3) Charles Cicchetti: claims to be the former "Chief Economist" of the Environmental Defense Fund. Environmental Defense wrote a letter to the oil companies calling that "fraudulent," declaring that Cicchetti never held any title when he worked for the organization over 30 years ago.
CA Secretary of State
Ad Watch, Laura Mecoy, Sacramento Bee, 10/8/06, http://www.sacbee.com/390/story/35565.html

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