Oregon rejects measure banning grocery tax

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon voters have rejected a measure amending the state constitution to ban future taxes on groceries.

Measure 103 was trailing in returns Tuesday night.

Out-of-state grocery and beverage industry giants poured millions into the campaign for the measure, which was seen by many as a thinly veiled attempt to pre-empt a statewide soda tax.

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg — a proponent of soda taxes in other places — donated $1.5 million in the final two weeks before the election to the campaign against the grocery tax ban.

Opponents said the ballot measure’s language was confusing and would have created uncertainty about taxes on everything from restaurant meals to farming to the transportation of food to grocery stores.