Voters rejected California's controversial drug price measure, putting an end to an expensive ballot initiative that sought to appeal to a public increasingly frustrated by high drug prices. The measure, Proposition 61, was rejected by 54% of voters or 4.6 million Californians. The law sought to lower drug costs by requiring state agencies to pay no more than prices negotiated by the U.S. Veterans Affairs Department. The VA's discounts range from 24% to 40%. More than $125 million combined was spent by opponents and supporters of Proposition 61, making it one of California's most expensive ballot initiatives. The pharmaceutical industry raised much of the $109 million spent in a campaign to challenge the measure. Supporters raised slightly more than $16 million. The measure had the support of local and national medical professional associations and Hillary Clinton's populist primary challenger, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont. The law would have benefited state agencies that pay for drugs whether or not they're the direct purchaser. That includes California's Medi-Cal fee-for-service outpatient drug program and its AIDS Drug Assistance Program. But it excluded Medi-Cal managed-care plans, which cover about 75% of the state's Medicaid population. Healthcare providers and even some patient advocates were concerned that the law would lead to higher drug prices and less access to medications. Opponents included the California Medical Association, California Association of Rural Health Clinics, California Association of Neurological Surgeons and several veterans groups.