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Financial Fraud Law

How Corporate Money Killed The California Cigarette Tax

 As we await the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in the case upholding the Montana state ban on corporate political contributions, word has filtered out that the proposed cigarette tax that was on the California ballot on June 5 – with proceeds intended to be used to fund cancer research – has been defeated.
It might be relevant to note that opponents of the proposed tax raised about $50 million in their successful effort to defeat it. The major contributors to that fund: Philip Morris (Altria) (which contributed over $27 million), R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, U.S. Smokeless Tobacco, American Snuff Company, Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company, and the California Republican Party. Proponents of the tax were able to fund their fight with only about $12 million, including over $8 million from the American Cancer Society.