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Millions in political contributions move in late-night transactions [Updated]

September 3, 2010 | 11:16 am

While you were sleeping, nearly $7.5 million in political donations moved into two ballot-measure campaigns -- one to suspend the state's greenhouse gas law and another to roll back recent tax cuts for corporations passed by state lawmakers.

The California Teachers Assn. moved $3.3 million into its political action committee for ballot measures Thursday. The CTA is the sponsor of Proposition 24, which would roll back more than $2 billion worth of tax breaks to California corporations.

The issue has apparently gotten the attention of a national teachers union as well. The National Education Assn. gave $2.125 million to the "Yes on 24" campaign Thursday.

Meanwhile, two oil companies, Flint Hills Resources and Tesoro, each gave $1 million to the Proposition 23 campaign. [Updated at 3:58 p.m. Read more about the contribution from Flint Hills Resources, which is owned by the billionaire Koch brothers, on our Greenspace blog.] If passed, Proposition 23 would suspend the state's greenhouse gas law, signed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, until unemployment is brought down to near-record lows. Opponents of the measure say it would effectively repeal the law.

Schwarzenegger criticized the contributions to Proposition 23, a measure he opposes. "It is extremely disappointing that another out-of-state oil company is contributing millions to repeal California's landmark clean energy and clean air law," he said in a statement Friday.

-- Anthony York in Sacramento