The California ballot initiative I first posted about here, the one initially funded by Giuliani supporter and hedge fund billionaire Paul Singer, is back in the news- apparently supporters are still rushing to get the 700,000 signatures needed to get this blatant GOP attempt to hijack the presidential vote on the ballot.  From the LA Times;

Backers of a California initiative that could significantly aid the next Republican presidential nominee said today they’re still collecting signatures to qualify it for the state’s ballot in June, terming as premature reports that they have wrapped up the process.

“The goal is to be completed by Dec. 1,” Mike Arno, the contractor heading the signature-gathering effort, told The Times’ Dan Morain.

He added that “people are still out working” and circulating petitions.

To qualify the measure, its supporters must obtain signatures from 434,000 registered California voters. They say they have obtained roughly that number of names, but inevitably many will be disqualified when state officials vet the petitions, often because the signers are not registered to vote. So to ensure they reach the required mark, the initiative supporters aim to amass about 700,000 signatures.

The measure calls for California to change the winner-take-all method for its 55 electoral votes — by far the nation’s largest cache and more than one-fifth of the total needed to win the White House. Instead, the electoral votes would be apportioned based primarily on the outcome of the presidential race in each congressional district.

So why am I saying the prospects are dim for this measure?

With odds increasing that the initiative will qualify for the ballot, Chris Lehane, a San Francisco-based Democratic activist leading the campaign to derail it, issued the following statement today:

“The power-grabbers are pursuing a lose-lose-lose strategy: It will lose at the ballot box, where it is polling below 30%; it will be a loser for the Republican Party, as it will brand the GOP as the party of presidential hijackers; and it will be a loser for Rudy Giuliani, whose close connections to the initiative will only further define him as someone who puts the raw, crass pursuit of power before the best interests of the country.”

So despite low polling the GOP is going ahead with this doomed initiative.  It will only prove how desperate the Republicans are, and how bad their prospects will be at the ballot box in 2008.

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