California's November 8 elections on "several controversial propositions" dealing with state redistricting, the school system, budget and drug prices "could be one of the biggest political scrapes of the year, involving $125 million in ad spending," reports Advertising Age. Supporters of Proposition 79, which would require pharmaceutical companies to reduce drug costs for lower-income patients, have hired former Howard Dean adviser Joe Trippi "to launch a grassroots, viral Internet campaign." Pharmaceutical companies are countering with Proposition 78, which would establish a "voluntary system of drug discounts." Their $75 million campaign for Prop. 78 includes television ads claiming that Prop. 79 would create "a costly new bureaucracy." Union groups have raised nearly $50 million to fight two other measures, Prop. 74 and Prop. 75, which would make it easier to fire new teachers and would restrict union spending on politics, respectively.
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