Guns & Guts Save CA Motorists 62 Billion Bucks

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I just sent out the following note to our email list and thought I should post it on the site as well.


I remember now why I hired armed guards to protect the voter signatures that put insurance reform Proposition 103 on the ballot twenty years ago.

Yesterday morning, the Washington, D.C.-based Consumer Federation of America issued a 100 page report that concluded that California drivers have saved $62 billion thanks to Proposition 103. Read our press release, the Sacramento Bee story, and view the TV news coverage.

A few hours later, a San Francisco judge rejected Allstate Insurance’s request to block $250 million in auto insurance rate cuts under Prop 103. That’s a quarter of a billion dollars in savings ordered by Insurance Commissioner Poizner after months of hearings in which Consumer Watchdog’s lawyers — Pam Pressley and Todd Foreman, and our outside counsel Dan Zohar — squared off against Allstate.

A lot of things have changed in twenty years – for one thing, I used to send these thank you letters by mail – but one thing hasn’t changed: your unwavering support for our fierce and uncompromising advocacy to protect your wallet and your rights.

Will you give a little of that $62 billion back by making a donation and becoming a member today? Your tax deductible donations help us keep up the fight daily.

And the $62 billion in savings are just for auto insurance. Since 103 passed in 1988, it has saved Californians hundreds of billions of dollars more on their homeowners and renters insurance. Small businesses got huge breaks on their liability policies. Over the last four years alone, Consumer Watchdog’s lawyers have blocked more than $60 million in unjust rate increases for the malpractice insurance that doctors have to buy.

The insurance industry’s $80 million campaign to defeat us at the ballot box failed. But that was just the beginning of the battle. We’ve had to fight off over eighty lawsuits brought by the insurance companies against Proposition 103.

The voters continue to win, thanks to the generous support of consumers like you.

According to yesterday’s report, Prop 103 has saved motorists $250 million each month, $8.2 million per day, $342,000 every hour.

So you tell me: how far would insurance companies have been willing to go to stop Prop 103 and keep those billions? I’m glad I hired those armed guards.

Harvey Rosenfield

Author of Prop 103

Founder of Consumer Watchdog

Consumer Watchdog
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