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Measure T Triumpfs Get Involved Today!

John Driscoll, Times-Standard
June 7, 2006

Critics warn county is headed for legal assault

Supporters of Measure T, an initiative to ban political contributions from non-local corporations, reveled in what they called a victory for citizens' rights in Humboldt County on Tuesday night.

The measure passed by an 10-point margin, with 18,107 voting yes and 14,834 voting no with 93.9 percent of the vote in.

”We're really excited that Humboldt County voters stood up for all of our rights and local control,” said Kaitlin Sopoci-Belknap by cell phone from the Lost Coast Brewery.

She said interest has been expressed from around the country, and that the campaign would be doing some national research.

Detractors, however, warned that the county is headed for expensive legal trouble, saying that the measure won't stand up to California statutes and case law.

”The fact is it's a direct frontal legal assault on the concept of corporate personhood,” said critic Chris Crawford.

Crawford also said that Measure T doesn't add up to campaign finance reform, and said the No on T camp would pursue a pledge to put a $500 limit on donations to political campaigns. He said he'll make the request to begin that effort through the Greater Eureka Chamber of Commerce, whose members overwhelmingly opposed Measure T.

Sopoci-Belknap said that she hopes the voters' resolve will not be challenged. She said that the county is responsible for defending itself against a legal attack, but said she's spoken with lawyers willing to help if such a challenge arose. She said further campaign reform is on the table for discussion.

The Lost Coast Brewery was also the scene of an election party for incumbent District Attorney Paul Gallegos, who first saw absentee ballots go against him, then watched as the vote turned to put him on top with 84 percent of the vote in. Gallegos has supported Measure T, saying the government should not be able to grant rights to corporations.

Former presidential Green Party candidate David Cobb told the Times-Standard that the larger goal of Measure T is to build a movement to make illegitimate the notion that a corporation can claim constitutional rights.

”We are in the early stages of a peaceful revolution being led at the ballot box by the voters of Humboldt County,” Cobb said.

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Humboldt County Leaders Endorse Measure T!

Democratic Party of Humboldt County

Green Party of Humboldt County

Central Labor Council of Humboldt and Del Norte Counties

American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local #1684

Building and Construction Trades of Humboldt and Del Norte Counties

Carpenters Union Local #751

Operating Engineers Union Local #3 AFL-CIO

Paul Gallegos, Humboldt County District Attorney

Peter LaVallee, Eureka Mayor

Chris Kerrigan, Eureka City Council

Dave Meserve, Arcata City Council

Harmony Groves, Arcata City Council

Paul Pitino, Arcata City Council

Bob Ornelas, Former Arcata Mayor

Connie Stewart, Former Arcata Mayor

Elizabeth Conner, Former Arcata City Council

Julie Fulkerson, Former Humboldt County Board of Supervisors

... and hundreds of other individuals and local businesses! Join us today!

View the full list of public endorsements!


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Pros and Cons of Measure T

Learn more about Measure T in a Pros and Cons Video, produced by Eileen McGee (51 mins)


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Chris Kerrigan, Eureka City Counsel, and Kate Christensen, owner of The Garden Gate, support Measure T! (1 min)


Paul Gallegos, Humboldt County District Attorney, and Nezzie Wade, community member, support Measure T! (1 min)


Larry Glass, owner of The Works, and Dennis Rael, owner of Los Bagles, support Measure T! (1 min)