Last month, we talked about California’s Proposition 33, which went to vote along with the Presidential election on Tuesday. Prop. 33 would have let auto insurance companies offer discounted rates to drivers who have maintained a long history of coverage, regardless of which company was covering their vehicle. The San Francisco Chronicle’s Drew Joseph gives us the results of California’s vote in “Prop. 33: Car insurance changes defeated.”
Insurance companies are able to offer lower car insurance quotes to drivers who have maintained insurance coverage with their company, but continuous coverage discounts were not allowed to be transferred to another insurer. Voters have rejected Prop. 33, so nothing will change in that respect, much to the dismay of Mercury Insurance’s George Joseph. He offered $16.9 million, or 99% of the funds used to campaign for Prop. 33. Opponents of the Proposition raised less than $300,000.
Two years ago, Prop. 17 asked Californians to pass a similar law regarding the transfer of car insurance coverage discounts. That failed as well, although it was close to passing. George Joseph of Mercury and other supporters said that even more residents would get insurance discounts with Prop. 33 than would have with Prop. 17. But opponents of both issues said that too many people would be punished with higher auto insurance premiums to make up for the discounts offered to others. They pointed specifically to the large amount of unemployed Californians that may be without auto insurance for a significant period of time. The discounts offered to some drivers would have to be financed by others getting punished. It remains to be seen whether Prop. 33 will be put on the ballot again under a different number, but George Joseph seems to have a lot of funds to put towards his cause.