By Chris Kramer — December 27, 2022
As citizens, we often think that we don’t have enough power to effect change, to have a significant impact in elections, or to defeat big monied interests. Well, in the 2022 election, a small band of dedicated individuals in Monterey County have proven that this is not always true. These few, along with the voters of Monterey County, defeated Measure Q. If passed, Measure Q would have established a new tax on property owners in Monterey County. The cost of living and owning in Monterey County is already cost-prohibitive. It is not a good idea to create an even higher burden on folks in the form of new taxes. Besides that, there are a handful of reasons why Measure Q was a bad idea. But how would voters know that it is a bad idea? The voter’s guide would have arguments in favor of the measure provided by the big monied interests. But the voter’s guide was not going to have a rebuttal to this argument. Nor was it going to include an argument against the measure. The voters were going to read a one-sided argument. When these determined few noticed this, they took action. They spent approximately $1000 altogether. With this they bought signs and developed arguments against Measure Q and a rebuttal to the argument in favor of Measure Q that were ultimately printed in the voter’s guide. They submitted articles and letters to the editor to local newspapers. If these individuals had not taken the actions that they did, voters would have been less well informed on election day. Who knows how it would have turned out. There is a very good chance that Measure Q might have passed. The big monied interests outspent these individuals 600 to 1. When that happens, you might expect that the big monied interests will win. Not this time.
Economist David Henderson tells the election story of Measure Q and how it was defeated in a Hoover Institution article titled, “Tax Vs. Facts: An Election Story”. Read it here: