What’s with the “public safety” voter guides?

By now you’ve probably received flier after flier after flier soliciting your vote for something. But two guides came out yesterday – the “Official Law Enforcement Voter Guide” and the “California Public Safety Newsletter and Voter Guide” – making things even more confusing.

Both guides provide endorsements of candidates and views on propositions. They both say no to Proposition 19 (the legalization of marijuana). Yet with the exception of Bill Lockyer (Treasurer) and Tom Torlakson (Superintendent of Public Instruction), both guides disagree with each other in endorsements for political office.

While the “Official Law Enforcement Voter Guide” endorses Jerry Brown for Governor and John Chiang for State Controller, the “California Public Safety Newsletter and Voter Guide” endorses Meg Whitman and Tony Strickland.

So who does “public safety” endorse?

The “Official Law Enforcement Voter Guide” was put out by the Peace Officers Research of California, whose mission is to maintain a leadership role in organizing, empowering, and representing the interest of rank and file peace officers.

In contrast, the “California Public Safety Newsletter and Voter Guide” was put out by the Policy Issues Institute, a “committed group of citizens concerned that President Obama‚Äôs liberal policies are a mistake for America”.The pamphlet was produced by Landslide Communications, who at first glance appears to produce marketing materials for Republican Campaigns.

In the end, the pamphlets seem to be yet another Republican vs. Democrat battle, just under different names and on different turf.

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