The defeat of a ballot measure to amend California’s “three strikes” law may not be the last effort to soften one of the nation’s toughest criminal sentencing measures. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that proponents of Proposition 66 — who had been encouraged by early, pre-election opinion polls showing public support for changing the law — said they weren’t giving up. Even some who opposed Tuesday’s proposal suggested the law still could be amended.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who led opposition to the measure, said he was willing “to look into the three strikes system to see if there is anything that ought to be adjusted.” The governor was criticized by proponents of the measure for using an argument that had been declared false by a judge. “It worked — the electorate was frightened to death,” said Assemblyman Mark Leno who worked to pass the proposition. San Mateo County District Attorney James Fox, a vocal opponent of Prop. 66, said he believed there “was sentiment out there to make some corrections to three strikes to eliminate the possibility of prosecutorial indiscretion.”