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'No on Prop. 5' links liberal Martin Sheen with unlikely allies

August 27, 2008 |  3:46 pm

Peace_out Actor and liberal activist Martin Sheen has agreed to co-chair the People Against Proposition 5 campaign, a coalition of groups and individuals whose stated aim is to defeat the Nov. 4 ballot measure. Proposition 5, which would ease criminal consequences of some drug offenses and rewrite some parole guidelines, has among its supporters billionaire philanthropist George Soros, who has donated $1 million in support of the measure. Opponents include MADD, the California District Attorneys Assn. and the California Police Chiefs Assn.

The actor's stance against Prop. 5 puts him arm in arm with the conservatives whom Sheen, as an outspoken critic of President Bush and his Iraq policies, usually fights. GOP consultant Kevin Spillane is spokesman for the campaign against Proposition 5, which now makes him and Sheen allies.

It's a toss-up what the actor is best known for -- portraying President Jed Bartlet on "The West Wing" or being the father of bad boy Brat Packer Charlie Sheen, whose drug addiction and repeat stints in rehab played out in the public eye.

"I am accepting a leading role in this effort because I believe Proposition 5 will do so much harm to so many people," Sheen said in a statement.  "Fighting drug addiction is an issue that is very close to my heart.  I believe in rehabilitation and not incarceration."

Politics does make strange bedfellows.

—Veronique de Turenne