Blog: Vote NO on Prop 34 — Judge Changes False and Misleading Statements by Proponents

Prop 34 proponents' attempt to suggest that the measure's $100 million appropriation was a result of alleged savings is false.

Sacramento County District Attorney Jan Scully, a statewide Co-Chair of Californians for Justice and Public Safety – No on 34 – today issued the following statement following the decision by Sacramento Superior Court Justice Timothy Frawley to change false and misleading statements made by Proposition 34 proponents in official ballot arguments as part of their campaign to eliminate California’s death penalty.  Nearly every major public safety organization in the state opposes Prop 34 because it will embolden criminals and endanger California.

 “We appreciate Judge Frawley's thoughtful decision, which upholds our position that the Proponents of Prop 34 are waging a deceptive campaign in an effort to eliminate the Death Penalty.

 Convincing a Judge to change ballot statements is an extraordinary action.  Judge Frawley agreed with us that Prop 34 proponents' attempt to suggest that the measure's $100 million appropriation was a result of alleged savings is false.  He rightly acknowledged that, if Prop 34 passes, $100 million will be taken from the State General fund, regardless of whether or not any money is actually saved. There were other assertions by the proponents in their ballot arguments that the judge labeled as ‘hyperbole” or “opinion’.  Translation - their assertions are exaggerated claims or opinions.

 California voters deserve better. Consumers must get accurate and honest disclosure of what is contained in the products they buy, or District Attorneys can prosecute the manufacturers for consumer fraud.   Said another way, they can be prosecuted for false advertising and unfair business practices.

 Sadly, there are no standards for honesty and accuracy for special interests and political campaigns.   If we did, Prop 34 proponents and those who have long sought to eliminate the death penalty wouldn’t get to use hyperbole or be allowed to mislead by exaggeration.  It should be noted that Prop 34 supporters did not challenge a single statement by our side.  That's because we stick to the facts and respect voters who have consistently and overwhelmingly affirmed the Death Penalty as a just sentence in cases where a murder has been committed with special and horrific circumstances. Never, in the arguments made by those who support repealing the death penalty do you hear them talk about the victims of the killers they seek to save.

 Well that stops today. Of course the murdered victims cannot speak, but there are victims who can.  They are the families of murdered victims that lost a loved one at the hands of a cold-blooded killer.  Our campaign will give them a voice to speak out about public safety. And that's what is important...public safety.  Justice...the right of Californians to live in a safe community.  Today is the first defeat for the Proposition 34 campaign.  The next one will be on Election Day, when voters reject the hyperbole and opinion and stand up for California by voting No on 34.”

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Frank Mockery August 10, 2012 at 10:01 PM
Marc Klass has made exploiting his daughter's tragic death his lifes work garnering publicity & handsome compensation in the process ! While we can certainly understand his anger & need for revenge the fact of the matter is that the death penalty has little if any effect on the commission of capital offenses ! While I respect his specious opinion,he's more concerned with drawing attention to himself & keeping himself in the public eye ! One wonders how Mr. Klaus would support himself if he actually had to work for a living anymore after all these years ! Executing the man who murdered his daughter can't prevent thousands of others from being murdered since then here in California,so let's call it what it is vengance not a deterrent !
Marc Klaas August 11, 2012 at 03:15 AM
Farnk, if you are going to assassinate my character at least spell my name correctly. Oh, and your comment, "While I respect his specious opinion, he's more concerned with..." is borderline incoherent.
Summer Hemphill August 11, 2012 at 03:19 PM
Notice that Marc Klaas doesn't refute any of Mr. Mockery's accusations,then again it's hard to dispute the truth. Quit besmirching your late daughters memory with your pathetic grandstanding,your fifteen minutes of fame ended years ago.
Jacob Bourne August 27, 2012 at 04:07 PM
Comment submitted by user Margo Schulter: While hyperbole and opinion are common in ballot arguments, the No on 34 argument that Proposition 34 "lets serial killers, cop killers, child killers, and those who kill the elderly, escape justice" really takes the cake! Is it really true that in 17 states, and 105 world nations where there is no death penalty for ordinary peacetime offenses including murder, killers simply "escape justice"? In the UK, for example, the worst murderers get a "whole life tariff," equivalent to the life without parole or LWOP which Prop. 34 leaves in place for these killers here. Many of us would call that justice. No on 34 claims that killers will get "lifetime housing and medical benefits." True, folks sentenced to LWOP without hope of ever being released, and required to perform labor and make restitution, do need to be housed and given decent medical care But would any sane person seek benefits of this kind. How about trading your current retirement benefits for a nice, comfy double cell at one of our Level 4 Maximum Security prisons? I rather think not! Such hyperbole is part of the great tradition of free speech in ballot arguments. And Judge Frawley was correct: redirect is strictly speaking inaccurate, since there isn't an earmarked "Death Penalty Fund" from which savings can be specifically redirected to the new SAFE California Fund. He fixed that gnat, but look at the camels that the No on 34 argument asks us to swallow!
Marc Klaas October 25, 2012 at 09:55 PM
Ms. Schulter, I take it that you somehow believe that the Nightstalker, Ramon Salcido, Richard Allen Davis and the rest of the scum that they represent will somehow integrate into the general population and be put to work to pay restitution. Not sure I would want to bunk with Salcido or put a screwdriver into the hands of Richard Ramirez. I am glad that you have so little consideration for other prisoners and the prison guards. No, they will continue to be housed in single cells, and yes, they will be "housed and given decent medical care", the guaranteed health care that none of us on the other side of the bars receive, for the rest of their miserable lives. They will continue to run their websites, troll for pen pals, and grin at us for decades like Charles Manson has been doing for the past 4+ decades. I'm further impressed that you are in lock step with the ACLU and the rest of the criminal apologists when you call opposition arguments "hyperbole" and refer to death row killers as "folks".


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