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Jerry Brown's $6-billion tax plan winning in California

November 7, 2012 |  6:07 am

Gov. Jerry Brown’s $6-billion-a-year tax initiative to rescue California schools and the state's finances appeared to squeak by with a victory

Proposition 30, the $6-billion-a-year tax initiative to rescue California schools and the state's finances, appeared to win in a major victory for Gov. Jerry Brown.

Brown had warned that if voters rejected the measure, billions of dollars would be cut from public education.

The reductions were written into the budget the governor signed over the summer, scheduled to take effect if Proposition 30 failed.

During the campaign, Brown faced opposition from the left and the right.

On the left, millionaire civil rights attorney Molly Munger pushed her own tax-hike measure, Proposition 38, and criticized the governor’s plan. Her proposition was rejected by California voters.

Meanwhile, anti-tax activists and wealthy conservative donors said the state government could not be trusted with more tax money.

Tuesday's election also brought an end to the three-decade-long congressional career of Rep. Howard Berman, who early Wednesday morning conceded defeat in his political slugfest against fellow Democrat Brad Sherman in the San Fernando Valley.

The bitter contest between Sherman and Berman, awash in more than $13 million in campaign spending by the candidates and independent political groups, was triggered when California's newly drawn political boundaries put the two incumbents in the same district.

"I congratulate Brad.... I will do whatever I can to ensure a cooperative and orderly transition," Berman said in a concise concession statement early Wednesday.

In a similar high-profile mash-up between Democrats, Rep. Janice Hahn of San Pedro was cruising to an easy win against Rep. Laura Richardson of Long Beach in a newly drawn district that includes many minority, working-class communities, election results showed.

-- Phil Willon

Photo: Gov. Jerry Brown thanks supporters for their work on his temporary tax-hike initiative, Proposition 30, during an election night party in Sacramento. Credit: Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press

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