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Thursday, November 1, 2018

By Sophia Bollag


SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP)—Dialysis companies have contributed an extraordinary $111 million to defeat a California ballot initiative.

Proposition 8 would cap profits for dialysis clinics that provide treatment for people with damaged kidneys.

A $5 million donation from dialysis company Fresenius pushed the anti-Proposition 8 campaign's total past the $109 million pharmaceutical companies spent two years ago to defeat a measure limiting prescription drug costs.

Proposition 8 opponents have raised more than any group on one side of a U.S. ballot issue since at least 2002. Ads blanketing the California airwaves feature dialysis patients saying passage could lead to clinic closures that endanger their lives.

The campaign supporting the measure, led by the Service Employees International Union, has spent $18 million. Supporters say passage will ensure dialysis companies put patients before profits.