From the Archives: Howard Jarvis votes for Prop. 13

June 6, 1978: Howard Jarvis, anti-tax activist and chief sponsor of the controversial Proposition 13, signals victory as he casts his vote at the Fairfax-Melrose precinct in Los Angeles.
(Ben Olender / Los Angeles Times)

Proposition 13, which placed limits on property taxes, passed by a 2-1 margin.

But there was an ironic twist: Then-Gov. Jerry Brown, who campaigned against Proposition 13, became a supporter and advocate. As reported by The Times’ George Skelton:

The governor railed against Prop. 13, calling it “a fraud,” “a rip-off” and “a can of worms.” But it passed with 65% of the vote.

That was the low point of Brown’s first term as governor -- a low point that lasted maybe 40 seconds.

“We have our marching orders from the people,” Brown quickly proclaimed.


And he quickly began leading the implementation of Prop. 13.... Jarvis, a Republican, was so smitten with the Democratic governor that he cut a TV ad praising him as he ran for reelection.

Brown easily won in November 1978.

This post was originally published on Aug. 18, 2010.

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