SACRAMENTO — Let's see. Maybe: "Money Launderers for Campaign Finance Reform." No, that probably wouldn't sell.
Could try: "Tax Exempt Fat Cats Against Higher Taxes for School Kids." Nope. That one doesn't have the right ring, either.
There's always: "California Reformers Against Special Interests and Higher Taxes." That's more traditional and has much better voter appeal.
This is all facetious, of course, sort of.
The real name is the Small Business Action Committee PAC, No on 30/Yes on 32. Citizens for Reforming Sacramento.
I especially chuckle at that last part. Reforming with laundered money.
You may have gotten a campaign flier or two in the mail from this outfit. Like all political junk mail — from the right or the left — it should be immediately tossed. They're pretty much all full of distortions and lies, designed to tell you whatever public-opinion surveys indicate would capture your vote.
The Small Business Action Committee PAC — which gets its money much less from small businesses than gazillionaires — picked up $11 million last week from an obscure Arizona nonprofit, non-taxable group called Americans for Responsible Leadership.
Who finances this organization? Nobody seems to know, at least in California. And, as of this writing, the people advocating responsible leadership were refusing to identify their donors.
"The problem," says Republican analyst Tony Quinn, a former member of the watchdog Fair Political Practices Commission, is that "unless we know where the money came from people are free to allege it came from anywhere, including Al Qaeda or the ayatollahs in Iran."
That's a little far-fetched. But maybe Mexican drug lords, for all we know.
The $11 million apparently is the largest anonymous political donation in the history of California.
Here's what happened: The so-called Americans for Responsible Leadership gave the secret money to the Small Business Action Committee PAC, headed by longtime anti-tax activist Joel Fox.
Fox is spending the money on opposing Proposition 30 and supporting Prop. 32. Some of the funds have been shuffled off to the anti-30 Californians for Reforms and Jobs. Not Taxes.
Love those names.
Prop. 30 is Gov. Jerry Brown's measure to temporarily raise upper-income and sales taxes to help schools and balance the budget. Prop. 32 is billed as an initiative to "stop special interest money" but in reality would cripple just one special interest: labor, both public and private sector.
"It's complete money laundering," said Brown, referring to the $11-million donation.
Responded Fox in his blog "Fox & Hounds:" A "desperate and politically motivated attack."
Well, yes. No argument about that. We are nearing the climax of the political season.