Voters in California defeated Proposition 29 on Tuesday night by a 50.8 percent to 49.2 percent count with all 21,993 precincts in the state reporting. Proposition 29 is a proposal to raise the tobacco tax in order to fund cancer research. If Proposition 29 was passed it would have raised the tax on each cigarette sold by five cents, which amounts to $1 per pack. An equivalent price would also occur on other tobacco products for the funding of cancer research. The passing of Prop 29 would have also created a committee of nine members that would have administered the funds raised by the increased taxes.
Funding for Proposition 29 came from the following organizations:
American Cancer Society ($8.47 million); Lance Armstrong’s foundation ($1.5 million); the American Heart Association ($563,594); New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg ($500,000); and the American Lung Association ($421,986).
Funding against Proposition 29 came from the following organizations:
Phillip Morris ($27.53 million); R.J. Reynolds ($11.17 million); U.S. Smokeless Tobacco ($3.04 million); American Snuff Co. ($1.75 million); and the Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Co. ($1.15 million).
The Propositions voted on Tuesday, which included Prop 29, will be among the last measures to ever appear on a primary ballot for the state. Governor Jerry Brown signed SB 202 into law back on October 7, 2011. SB 202 does not allow future ballot measures on primary ballots, only on general election ballots in November.