Jul 302020

Allow your intrepid blogger to give some background as to why I even care about this ballot measure. As I was investigating the insider politics of the CAGOP, the hidden financial transactions, massive paychecks, candidate lynchings, insider control and the like – Prop 19 came on to my radar.

I was first informed that David Stafford Reade was calling people on the initiatives committee of the CAGOP. In and of itself, that is not an issue – but the deliberations were mostly being done privately and rank-and-file delegates really were not participating in the process. Then, I found out that David Stafford Reade is alleged to be on the payroll of the No on 19 effort along with someone who may or may not be Tom Ross. Ross is an alternate on the CAGOP Board of Directors in order to skirt conflict of interest rules as he is a partner in a gigantic California GOP consulting firm. Since the actual member he serves as an alternate for never (literally never) shows up for meetings, Ross is effectively a member of the CAGOP’s Board of Directors. This needs to stop.

Tom Ross also directs millions of expenditures related to the CAGOP as the grand poobah of “Team Cal” (read the CAGOP By-Laws it is in there). How is this not a conflict of interest?

Jessica Patterson was telling people she had the votes to kill Prop 19 on the Initiatives committee, as if we needed any more proof that Patterson is far from a fair CAGOP Chairwoman. The issue is not these people making a living, it is the lack of transparency and the insider game where a shrinking coven of control agents get rich off of failure.

For years when I did campaign work, I could predict the endorsements for each candidate based on who their political consultant was. While I never had any direct proof, it was and is common knowledge that Jon Coupal would accept donations to Howard Jarvis for endorsements. I was told but could not prove that Meg Whitman paid for her endorsement in 2010. I’ve been told by three different consultants that they had discussed “honorariums” with Howard Jarvis, Gun Owners (Sam Parades) and others. David Stafford Reade, Jon Coupal and Sam Parades go back years. Even if they did nothing illegal, the stench of insider politics is strong. I watched patterns for years which is why I knew then that endorsements were not worth the paper they are printed on.

I am not alone in my opinion of Jon Coupal being a coin-operated fraud. Jon Coupal got nuked in the 2010 Meg Whitman campaign by Dan Morain. While Dan Morain is a liberal, he has tarred Liberal and Conservative alike for being a phony.

The meaning of purity depends on who does the defining. Coupal promotes initiatives to limit campaign spending by labor and is a critic of public employee unions and their pensions, even as the organization has accepted $42,000 from the California Teachers Association and $10,000 from the California Correctional Peace Officers Association. Both donations were earmarked for Jarvis-backed initiative fights.

Millions pass through the Jarvis organization each year. The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, the main umbrella organization, disclosed that it raised $12 million in 2008.

That’s right – Jon Coupal took money from the Teacher’s Union and should be disregarded as a serious conservative let alone Republican. He and Jarvis are nothing more than political consultants or paid bloggers. It’s time for Jon Coupal to man up and be honest about who he is.

This gets me to Prop 19, it is something Howard Jarvis has allegedly been fighting to get passed for years. I have a hard time believing that Jon Coupal arrived at his conclusion to oppose Prop 19 on his own, similar to David Reade and Jessica Patterson.

Get rid of the hyperbole – Prop 19 100% exempts the entire farm. Land and the home – the farm transfers in its’ entirety to the heirs with the lower tax base from the deceased family member. This is the main thrust of Prop 19, to save family farmers from losing their farm due to a re-assessment at death of the farmer. 

Perhaps this is why James Gallagher and Megan Dahle voted to put Prop 19 on the ballot – both are unassailable conservatives.

Prop 19 gives the elderly and the disabled the ability to move anywhere in the state and take their prop 13 base with them. 3 times! Right now it can only happen once and then, only in 11 counties.

This means that an elderly couple trapped in San Jose can move to Modesto without being bankrupted.

When Prop 58 was passed, it gave people the ability to transfer property to their heirs. In the words of Jon Coupal:

Still, Coupal said he believes voters did not intend to grant as broad tax relief as they did when they passed the 1986 measure.
“The average voter probably did not have in mind a multimillion-dollar property being given [to children] that they could use as income-producing property and then live out of state,” Coupal said.
What changed Mr. Coupal?
Coupal, the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Assn. president, said the inheritance tax break provides policy benefits. He argued those who want to live in their parents’ homes, maintain family farms or hardware stores or inherit small apartment buildings shouldn’t face huge property tax bills after their parents die.
Proposition 19 gives the heirs of the deceased a year to either sell the property or occupy it as their primary residence. Otherwise, if it is kept as a rental it is assessed at current market value. Right now, California is the only state that allows rental properties to flow through with such an exemption.
This is why the wealthy “Team Cal” people like Howard Hakes, Tom Ross and others hate Prop 19. They could care less that it helps the elderly and disabled move to other areas, and they could care less about a family farmer being exempted from higher Property Tax basis forever. Their rental property on the Santa Monica coast that they inherited under the Prop 58 exemption (aimed at families passing primary residences down to each other) will suddenly be taxed at current market value. Meantime, the people that need the Prop 58 tax break will actually be able to get it under Prop 19.
Currently, 60% of parent-child transfers are rental properties. In Coupal’s own words this was not the intent of Prop 58. In Coupal’s own words family farmers need to be protected. What changed in just two years?
The thing I find amazing is that the wealthy fat cat opponents of Prop 19 have the ability to set up trusts and do complex estate planning that could shield any property affected by Prop 19. The ordinary folks (like say me) that leave a house for their children have an extra $1 Million of protection added by Prop 19 that is not present currently.
This means, you leave a house for your kids that was assessed at $250K when you bought it and it is worth $1,249,900 when you die – your kids do NOT have a step up in property tax base weather or not they occupy it.
If you are a victim of a natural disaster (beyond Gavin Newsom), Prop 19 will also allow you to move without a re-assessment in all 58 counties. Right now only 11 Counties have such a provision. There is no such protection or ability under the current tax code in the other 47 counties. Think about the massive wildfires that have lit up California – face it, conservatives won’t have a majority any time soon to deal with the extreme left wing enviros whose lawsuits have thwarted land management. This means somehow we need to deal with the here and now until we can unseat a generation of leftist judges and legislators. Why continue punishing people in the North and Center of California because someone is mad over their beach house getting re-assessed?
Farmers grow food. They deserve to be protected for generations. The elderly deserve to be able to move away from neighborhoods that have been forcibly gentrified by Sacramento. The Disabled are usually disabled through no fault of their own. People whose houses burn in wildfires the same. It just makes sense that they deserve help from the tax code instead of a one-size-fits all hammer that has been abused for 30+ years.
You get to choose, Help Family Farmers, the Disabled, the Elderly and Wildfire victims – or let the people who abused Prop 58 spend millions convincing you to let them continue to do so.
Vote yes on Prop 19.
P.S. If you still have doubts about the voracity of Howard Jarvis’ opposition to Prop 19, Take a look at this:

The organization (Howard Jarvis) has taken other stands that were more remunerative than popular. In 2004, Coupal appeared on television commercials attesting to the wisdom of an initiative sponsored by the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, which owns two casinos in downtown Palm Springs and in the outskirts.

The initiative, Proposition 70, sought to give tribes unlimited authority to expand their casinos on their reservations so long as they paid the state part of their earnings.

“With Proposition 70,” Coupal said on the commercials, “casinos help share the burden for schools, health care and public safety.”

Voters rejected the measure, but it was not a total loss. Agua Caliente donated $1.825 million to one of Jarvis’ political committees.