FILE - In this Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016, file photo, soft drink and soda bottles are displayed in a refrigerator at El Ahorro market in San Francisco. After years of stamping out soda tax proposals with well-financed campaigns, Big Soda is suddenly finding itself up against bigger adversaries. In early November 2016, voters and lawmakers in five jurisdictions, including San Francisco and Chicago’s Cook County, approved special taxes on sugary drinks, with advocates chalking up the streak of victories to a shift in public attitudes. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)

FILE - In this Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016, file photo, soft drink and soda bottles are displayed in a refrigerator at El Ahorro market in San Francisco. After years of stamping out soda tax proposals with well-financed campaigns, Big Soda is suddenly ... finding itself up against bigger adversaries. In early November 2016, voters and lawmakers in five jurisdictions, including San Francisco and Chicago’s Cook County, approved special taxes on sugary drinks, with advocates chalking up the streak of victories to a shift in public attitudes. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File) (The Associated Press)

Billionaires put pop in advocates' push for soda taxes

Markets Associated Press

After years of stamping out soda tax proposals with well-financed campaigns, Big Soda is suddenly finding itself up against bigger adversaries.

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Voters and lawmakers in five municipalities such as San Francisco and the county that includes Chicago approved special taxes on sugary drinks last week.

Others that passed last week were in Oakland and Albany, California, and Boulder, Colorado. They follow Berkeley, California, in 2014, and Philadelphia this summer.

Advocates chalk up the streak of victories to a shift in public attitudes, but they're also now backed by billionaires. The soda industry says the measures don't amount to a movement, and that the proposals are being pushed in places more likely to pass them.