Two California ballot measures that inspired a controversial $11 million dark money donation in October ended up going the other way on Tuesday.
Tens of millions of dollars were spent by both sides in the battles over Proposition 30, which was Gov. Jerry Brown’s tax-hike initiative, and Proposition 32, which would have prohibited labor unions from raising political money through payroll deductions. But an Arizona group called Americans for Responsible Leadership prompted outcry from progressives and Democrats a few weeks ago, when it gave the $11 million donation to a California group opposing Prop. 30 and supporting Prop. 32. A 501(c)4 nonprofit group, Americans for Responsible Leadership could and until recently did keep its donors secret. But a legal battle initiated by California’s Fair Political Practices Commission eventually forced the Arizona group to reveal that the money actually came from the conservative organization Americans for Job Security, and had been funneled through The Center to Protect Patient Rights, another non-profit tied to the movement of millions of dollars between political groups.