Jeremy B. White writes at The Sacramento Bee:
A referendum measure to overturn California’s new vaccine mandate will not go before voters, according to a preliminary signature count from proponents.
Adversaries of Senate Bill 277, which requires children without medical exemptions to receive all their shots before enrolling in school, hoped to repeal the law with a ballot referendum. But an internal count from the referendum organizers shows them with about 200,000 signatures, far short of the 365,880 valid signatures they need to suspend the law and place it before voters next year. Initiative experts say advocates should submit far more than the required number to make up for duplicated and invalid signatures. The deadline for submitting signatures was Monday.
The 200,000 figure is contained on a spreadsheet compiled by the campaign’s county organizers, one of whom provided the document to The Sacramento Bee, and does not reflect an official tally. Counties have until next Thursday to send their estimates to the state. If the counties determine proponents have enough signatures, officials with the California secretary of state’s office would conduct a random sampling to determine how many of the submitted signatures are valid.