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Wealthy Donors Give $350 Million On California Initiatives

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SACRAMENTO (AP) — An astonishing $350 million has been raised so far to sway voters on 11 California ballot initiatives.

While much of the money has come from labor and business groups, a significant share has come from the ultra-wealthy. Californians can thank a handful of billionaires and millionaires for jamming airwaves and mailboxes with a barrage of advertising.

The causes range from Gov. Jerry Brown’s Proposition 30 tax increase to a labeling requirement for genetically modified food. Proponents and opponents of Proposition 32, which seeks to undercut labor’s clout, will likely end up spending more than $120 million.

The rich who are pouring money into campaigns include a brother and sister with divergent political views and an insurance tycoon who is asking Californians to give insurance companies more leeway to set rates.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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