Hollywood actor and director Rob Reiner stepped down last week as the chairman of the California Children and Families Commission.
In a March 29 letter to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Republican, Mr. Reiner said he didn’t want to “let personal political attacks get in the way of doing the very best we can for California’s children.”
Mr. Reiner has been facing pressure from state legislators to leave the commission amid suspicion that the organization—which was established after a 1998 tobacco-tax initiative that Mr. Reiner spearheaded—spent more than $20 million on an advertising campaign designed to boost support for his latest statewide preschool ballot initiative.
Proposition 82, on the June 6 ballot, would levy an additional 1.7 percent income tax on the state’s wealthiest residents to provide a free year of prekindergarten for all 4-year-olds. Mr. Reiner, who has maintained that he was not involved in devising the ads, was appointed to the commission in 1999 by former Democratic Gov. Gray Davis.
A version of this article appeared in the April 05, 2006 edition of Education Week