San Francisco vaping ordinance loses primary sponsor

Welcome to the Thursday, October 3, Brew. Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:

  1. Juul ends support for San Francisco measure authorizing sale of electronic cigarettes
  2. Local Roundup
  3. Quiz: What Supreme Court justice wrote the most opinions in the 2018-2019 term?

Juul ends support for San Francisco measure authorizing sale of electronic cigarettes

Regular Ballotpedia readers know that a successful campaign to qualify a ballot measure to appear before voters involves time, effort, and money. It’s uncommon for proponents of a measure that’s already on the ballot to end their support of such an effort just prior to an election. That’s what makes this story so interesting.

The newly appointed CEO of Juul Labs—K.C. Crosthwaite—announced September 30 that the company was pulling its financial backing of the campaign supporting San Francisco Proposition C. The measure would authorize and regulate the sale of electronic cigarettes and other nicotine vapor products in the city, including provisions regarding the advertisement of such products and the restrictions of sales to minors.

So far, Juul Labs has contributed $11.6 million in loans to the effort. Juul had been the only donor to the Yes on C campaign. Following Juul’s announcement, Yes on C announced it was suspending its campaign and released the following statement: “We understand JUUL’s leadership has decided to cease support for the campaign as part of a larger review of the company’s policies. Based on that news, we have made the decision not to continue on with the campaign. … We will be winding down all campaign activities over the course of this week.”

Proposition C was designed to overturn a 2019 ordinance that prohibits the sale of e-cigarettes in San Francisco that have not been reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). A related ordinance prohibits manufacturing, distributing, and selling e-cigarettes on city-owned property. To date, no vaping product has undergone a complete review by the FDA. Both ordinances will take effect in early 2020.

Proposition C was placed on the ballot after a successful initiative petition campaign that submitted 20,302 signatures in July. The measure will still appear on San Francisco’s November 5 ballot. Local citizen initiatives cannot be withdrawn later than 88 days prior to the election.

San Francisco voters will also decide five other ballot measures November 5, including:

  • a $600 million bond issue to fund affordable housing;
  • a charter amendment to change the city’s Aging and Adult Services commission;
  • a tax on ride-share companies designed to fund public transportation services and pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure;
  • reductions to zoning and approval requirements for affordable housing and educator housing projects; and,
  • limits on campaign contributions and requirements for campaign advertisements for city elections.

Learn more



Local Roundup

At Ballotpedia, we provide election coverage of all officeholders in the nation’s 100 largest cities—including mayors, city council members, and other municipal officers. We also cover every election on the ballot in these cities, such as county officials and local ballot measures.

Here’s our weekly summary of the local news we’re covering. Email me to suggest some interesting local election coverage in your area—I’d love to hear about it!

Memphis, Tennessee

Incumbent Jim Strickland, former Mayor Willie Herenton, County Commissioner Tamara Sawyer, and nine other candidates are running for mayor in a nonpartisan election held today—October 3. Strickland unseated incumbent A.C. Wharton in 2015. Herenton was elected as Memphis’ mayor in 1991 and served until resigning during his fifth term in 2009. Sawyer has served on the county commission since 2018.

Memphis mayoral elections do not allow for runoffs, meaning that whichever candidate receives the most votes will win outright. Although the election is officially nonpartisan, Herenton, Sawyer, and Strickland are all members of the Democratic Party. Memphis is also holding elections for the open-seat position of city clerk and all 13 seats on its city council. Nine council incumbents are running for re-election and none of them are unopposed.

Raleigh, North Carolina

The city of Raleigh is holding general elections for mayor and all seven seats on the city council on October 8. Six candidates are running to replace Nancy McFarlane—first elected in 2011—who announced in March that she would not seek re-election.

In the city council races, six of seven incumbents are running for re-election. If no candidate receives a majority of the vote in any race, the second-place finisher can request a runoff, which would be held November 5. Raleigh’s mayor and city council members serve two-year terms.

Quiz: What Supreme Court justice wrote the most opinions in the 2018-2019 term?

As I’ve highlighted here in the Brew, the new Supreme Court term begins Monday—on October 7. As that date gets closer and closer, I’ve passed the time by reviewing facts from the last term.

After each case is decided, one judge from the majority writes the majority opinion and one from the minority authors the dissenting opinion. Any justices can also issue a concurring opinion on any case to further explain the reasoning behind their decision—whether he or she was in either the majority or minority.

Which Supreme Court justice authored the most opinions during the 2018-19 term?

A. Samuel Alito
B. Stephen Breyer
C. Ruth Bader Ginsburg
D. Clarence Thomas