UPDATE: Prop. 19 Contributions

En Español

Proposition 19 seeks to change California law to legalize marijuana and allow it to be regulated and taxed.

This map shows campaign contributions by zip code in California.

Orange represents contributions to campaigns against the proposition. Green represents contributions to campaigns supporting the proposition.

Larger circles represent a higher dollar amount.

Click on a circle to view total donations for each zip code. See legend for more detailed figures.

As of November 2, 2010:

Total donations opposing Proposition 19:
$262,599 (Calif. donations) + $55,000 (out of state) = $317,599

Total donations in support of Proposition 19:
$2,491,821.83 (Calif. donations) + $2,560,755.41 (out of state) = $5,052,577.24

Notable Donors

While Prop. 19 opposition funds mostly came from organizations like the California Police Chiefs Association, the real fuel for the campaign in favor of the proposition to legalize marijuana came from individuals.

From within California, S.K. Seymour LLC, better known as Oaksterdam, Richard Lee’s cannabis university in Oakland, gave more than $1.4 million to the committee named “Yes on 19. Tax Cannabis 2010. Sponsored by S.K. Seymour LLC, a Medical Cannabis Provider, DBA Oaksterdam University, a Cannabis Educator.”

Recently, the committee tacked on: “With Support from Dustin Moskovitz” to the end of its name. Moskovitz, who sent donations totaling $120,000 from a zip code in the Mission District, is best known as a cofounder of Facebook.

Sean Parker, another name from Facebook history, donated $200,000 to the Prop. 19 campaign from his home state of Virginia.

Other noteworthy donors include George Zimmer, CEO of the Men’s Warehouse, who donated $70,500 from a zip code in Fremont, Rolling Stone magazine owner and editor Jann Wenner, who gave $2,500, and David Bronner, co-owner of Dr. Bronner’s magic soap and cosponsor of the committee Students for Sensible Drug Policy, with a donation of $75,000. Retired Progressive Insurance chairman Peter B. Lewis, who ran into some legal troubles for marijuana possession in New Zealand last decade, donated over $200,000.

But all of those donations look like spare change next to George Soros’s $2 million contribution, which nearly doubled the total in support of the proposition. The multibillionaire investor authored an opinion piece for the Wall Street Journal explaining his stance, published the same day he delivered the highest chunks of contributions, just last week.

Share!FacebookGoogle+PinterestRedditLinkedInEmail

14 Comments

  1. The drug war has washed away cherished legal traditions so slowly that most Americans now see the drug war paradigm as normal.

    My grandparents’ generation would roll in their graves if they knew. Prop 19 is a 1st step to sanity. (BTW, I don’t smoke anything; my drug is beer….. every day, and it used to be illegal.)

  2. shampoovta

    Oh thank you. I see my aria is a little behind
    on donations. I will need to make a donation to represent my end of California. This is very useful information. Thank you.

  3. mark

    Low donations may also reflect recent polls showing most people have made up their minds. 19 wins if under 30s vote. Loses if they don’t.

  4. anna

    When will we ever get it? Laws are not to take away. They are there to protect us. Why is it sane to legalize a drug that is harmful and considered a gateway to other drugs?

  5. Big J

    The only gateway cannabis provides is to enlightenment

  6. yo

    Don’t be a dummy, Vote Yes on prop 19!

  7. Barry

    Marijuana is NOT a gateway drug. That was simply a lie that Anslinger made up to scare people into banning it. Studies have shown that Prohibition is the gateway POLICY. Kids are put into contact with illegal drug dealers who start by selling them Pot and then move them up to harder drugs to make more money.

    Ending Prohibition will protect our children by removing the soft drug dealers from our schools. You don’t see kids selling Alcohol to other kids do you? You don’t. Because Alcohol is legal.

    Vote yes on Prop 19. Stop the lies and save some lives. It’s time.

  8. Trent

    Television is a gateway drug…

  9. RobertM

    Cannabis is no more a gateway drug then diapers are gateway pants. Any thinking person, well educated in the history of cannabis has to see the insanity of prohibition and the damage it has caused to tens-of-thousands of people. Billions that have been wasted via failed law enforcement which could be better spent elsewhere.
    Our own government (on the federal and state level) has done several extensive studies wherein it was shown that cannabis is harmless and even beneficial when used responsibly. These same studies, one encouraged by Pres. Richard M. Nixon, recommended the end of prohibition, much to the dismay of Nixon.
    Such luminaries such as Carl Sagan have used cannabis and written about the beneficial properties of this versatile plant. It could be cultivated for use as Food, Fuel, Fiber and Medicine as well as for recreational use and well being/pleasure.
    Education is key in making any decision. Get educated about how this plant became illegal and who was behind it and why. The myths surrounding cannabis must be brought out into the light of day so we can all make informed decisions. Stop falling for the propaganda machine.
    Be healthy. Be responsible. Make an informed decision. Stop the insanity. Vote yes on Prop 19.

  10. Does this map only account for donations from within California? What about national donations, for example from Big Tobacco, Big Pharma, NORML, or other groups without CA zip codes?

    This is an interesting map — thanks for posting it — but I’m suspicious that it’s only a partial picture of the money behind Prop 19. Can you clarify please?

  11. Jessica Lum Post author

    Hi Nate,

    You’re right, this shows, for simplicity’s sake, the donations from within California.

    NORML does have a donation listed from within CA. All donations opposing the proposition are from within CA as well. I can make note of the non-CA donations in an update.

  12. norm wool

    The anti 19 folks are still feeding everybody the same Crap no body finds credible. I’m a registered rebublican and will vote yes on 19. Some of us conservatives won’t say it out loud because of political correctness. There are many of us ,once alone in the voting booth, will vote yes.

  13. Jessica Lum Post author

    This update includes a notation for out-of-state financing in support of passing proposition 19. Opposition received no out-of-state finances.

  14. jon cook

    GO 19! YES ON THIS ONE FOLKS~!WHEN IS IT DEMCRACY WHEN WE ARE ‘ PENALIZED BY OUR GOV ‘ BY VOTING YES? VOTE YES!~

Comments are closed.