Family Farmers support voter choice initiative, proposition 62
» September 27, 2004 «
Faced with a state Legislature that is often indifferent to farmers and taxpayers, the California Farm Bureau Federation has enhanced its support for a ballot measure to reform primary elections.
The Farm Bureau has contributed $100,000 to the campaign to pass Proposition 62, the Voter Choice Open Primary Elections measure on the Nov. 2 ballot. The measure permits all voters to participate in primary elections and choose candidates regardless of party registration.
"The polarization of the state Legislature prevents it from addressing issues crucial to farmers, ranchers and all Californians," California Farm Bureau Federation President Bill Pauli said.
The recent reapportionment plan designed by the Democratic leadership and former Gov. Gray Davis protects incumbents from disenfranchised voters.
"Despite their best effort, the 2003 recall election proved that the people of California are still in charge of their future," Pauli said.
He said that family farmers are hopeful that Proposition 62 will lead to competitive campaigns and thoughtful debate on what's best for California's future.
"Moreover, farmers and ranchers see this as an opportunity to ensure that those elected to the state Legislature understand that to create jobs, they must keep taxes low, reduce employer mandates and, most importantly, always remember that the people of California will hold them accountable for wasteful government spending and unbalanced budgets," he said.
Pauli said Farm Bureau's support for Proposition 62 is consistent with its goals of creating a more representative state government. Farm Bureau was among the first organizations to endorse Arnold Schwarzenegger's candidacy for governor. He said Proposition 62 provides another opportunity for farmers and ranchers to reform the business of government.
The state's largest farm organization, the California Farm Bureau Federation will mobilize nearly 90,000 members statewide to influence the outcome of the November election. California is the nation's largest farm state; agriculture supports more than 1 million California jobs.
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