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Props. 53, 54 OKd for October Ballot

September 03, 2003|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

The U.S. Justice Department approved the California secretary of state's request to include Propositions 53 and 54 on the Oct. 7 recall ballot, clearing one more legal obstacle to the election.

Proposition 53 would require that as much as 3% of the state budget be spent on public works projects.

Proposition 54 would prevent public agencies from collecting and using many kinds of racial data.

In addition, the department indicated in a letter to Kings County that it had no objections to changes in that county's election plan for Oct. 7.

Kings, Merced, Monterey and Yuba counties were required to submit any changes in their election plans to officials in Washington for review under the federal Voting Rights Act because of past voting irregularities.

The state was also required to obtain Justice Department approval for the four counties before moving the two propositions from their originally scheduled March ballot date.

The department's decision leaves only one significant challenge to the election: a lawsuit concerning an independent request from Monterey County to halve the total number of precincts it will open Oct. 7.

The department has not indicated when it will rule on the plan.

A federal court panel in San Jose is scheduled Friday to revisit the question of whether the election can proceed without federal approval.

Boxer to Aid Internet Group's Anti-Recall Bid

U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) said she will appear today at the launch of a campaign by www.MoveOn.org, an Internet group expected to formally oppose the effort to recall Gov. Gray Davis.

Boxer has expressed strong opposition to the recall but has also offered support for Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante's candidacy if the recall succeeds.

MoveOn was founded by Silicon Valley entrepreneurs Wes Boyd and Joan Blades out of opposition to President Clinton's impeachment.

"MoveOn has been an excellent example of democracy in action," a Boxer spokesman said. "The senator wants to get behind it any way she can."

Huffington Goes After Schwarzenegger on Web

Columnist, gubernatorial candidate and Toyota hybrid driver Arianna Huffington on Monday unveiled an animated short on the Web -- www.votearianna.com/movie/ -- that takes aim at Arnold Schwarzenegger and his taste for Hummers. "Hybrid vs. Hummer" pits Huffington against the Republican front-runner in a road race.

School Workers Union Contributes to Davis

Gov. Gray Davis' anti-recall committee, Californians Against the Costly Recall of the Governor, reported Tuesday night the receipt of a $200,000 contribution Saturday from the California School Employees Assn., which represents classified workers.

200 Reporters Seek Credentials for Debate

National and international news outlets can't seem to get enough of the leading candidates in the gubernatorial race, as well as the man who is the target of the special recall election.

About 200 reporters from around the world have requested credentials for the first nationally televised candidates forum, scheduled for today, even though Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger has said he won't participate.

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

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