Strategist Deconstructs the Mythology of Proposition 16


For October 28, 2020

Election Preview

SAN DIEGO, CA – October 28, 2020 – The strategist and chief consultant for Californians for Equal Rights, the No on Prop 16 campaign, today dispelled the mythology of Proposition 16.

In a detailed memorandum, Arnold Steinberg, who served in the same strategic role for Proposition 209 in 1996, debunks the common misconceptions relating to Proposition 209 and Proposition 16. The former, placed on the ballot, and adopted, by California voters in 1996, amended the State Constitution to prohibit racial discrimination and preferences. The latter, placed on the November ballot by the State Legislature, would also amend the State Constitution, but to remove Prop 209’s protection against racial discrimination. 

“California voters see through the deceptive ballot label that favors Proposition 16,” Steinberg said. “In the nearly quarter century since Proposition 209, California has grown more diverse, and it’s no surprise that voters are even more committed to equality under the law. Accordingly, they will not give political hacks the power to play favorites: to use race to award lucrative government contracts to cronies, use race to hire, promote and lay off government workers, and use race in education, from K-12 through college.”

Please see memo here:


Ying Ma

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Cindy Northon

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(203) 680-0203