SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Northern California voters are supporting the Democratic candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives. Democrat Jared Huffman has 70% of the vote. Republican Daniel Roberts’ has 30%. The winner of this race replaces Wally Herger, the Republican who’s held that state’s 2nd congressional seat office since being elected in 1986 and is retiring this year after redistricting brought him into a different district.
California voters are not supporting Proposition 34, which would make California the 18th state to do away with the death penalty. The initiative is known as the Safe California Act. It replaces the death penalty with life in prison without the possibility of parole. Right now, California has more than 700 inmates on death row, and voters in the past have strongly endorsed the death penalty, even though only 13 people have been executed in the last 23 years.
Politicians, and food producers across the country, are keeping their eyes on the results of California’s Proposition 37, which would require labeling of genetically modified food. The latest numbers show only 47% of voters supporting the initiative. Opponents say it will increase the cost of groceries by $400 a year for families, supporters say consumers have a right to know what they are eating.
An effort to boost education funding is passing, Proposition 30 would increase taxes on earnings over $250,000 for seven years and sales taxes would go up by a quarter of 1% for 4 years. It has 54% support right now; some estimate it would raise $50 billion, but opponents say the wording of the proposition don’t guarantee that money for education.
California Proposition 31 is an effort to reform the legislature’s budget process to change the spending habits of state lawmakers, it changes the state budget from an annual plan to a two-year cycle. Prohibits any new spending of $25 million or more unless the tab is offset by new revenues or cuts of an equal amount to other programs. Gives the governor more authority to cut the budget in fiscal emergencies when lawmakers don’t act. Some worry it could hurt the state during emergencies. The proposition is not passing with 39% of the vote so far.