Gay Marriage, Pot Among Ballot Issues

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Gay Marriage, Pot and Campaign Finance on the Ballot Next Week

CAMPAIGN FINANCE

The California legislation, primarily advocated for by the state's Republicans, would prohibit unions and corporations from collecting money for political contributions from their members or employees by automatic paycheck deductions.

The provision is expected to hit labor unions the hardest because they primarily use paycheck deductions as a means to collect dues and contributions from their members. Corporations, however, use this strategy on a much smaller scale.

Unions have launched an aggressive $60 million effort to defeat the measure, according to the Sacramento Bee.

After Montana tangled with the Supreme Court earlier this year in an effort to preserve a 100 year law in the state that had prohibited corporations from influencing elections in the state until in 2010, the Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission Supreme Court ruling said that corporations and unions could contribute unlimited amounts to certain campaign committees.

In June, the Supreme Court upheld its Citizens United Decision and reversed the Montana law. But the ballot initiative remains for voters to weigh in this November. If approved, the legislation is unlikely to hold up in Federal Court.

PHYSICIAN-ASSISTED SUICIDE

In Massachusetts, the controversial physician-assisted suicide issue is on the ballot and in the news once again. The highly polarizing measure, called the "Act Relative to Death With Dignity," would allow terminally ill patients who are given six months or fewer to live the ability to request lethal drugs.

If approved, Mass. would become the third state—after Washington and Oregon— to approve such a law.

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