Supporters of Proposition 46 on the Nov. 4 ballot must think the California voter is really stupid.

Proposition 46 is a measure put on the ballot by trial lawyers who want to raise the limit on noneconomic damages in malpractice cases. But the proponents must have found out that the measure didn’t poll well, so they added two other unrelated matters to it in a strategy so obvious that it’s almost laughable.

We certainly understand why they would want to raise the limit on the so-called “pain and suffering” designation, even if we don’t agree. The limit of $250,000 was established back in 1975 with the approval of then-and-now Gov. Jerry Brown. Proponents of the measure say that the cap should be adjusted for inflation, which would move it up to $1.1 million.

But nonpartisan studies have shown that such a move up would have a damaging impact on already high health care costs. That’s why every attempt to raise the limit has gone nowhere in the state Legislature.

So proponents figured, why not dress it up with two other proposals and present the entire package to the voter? Maybe then, they reason, we can sneak through the higher malpractice awards.

One of the added provisions of the bill is random drug and alcohol testing of doctors. After all, who could object to that? As the measure is written, we do. It calls for a complex testing system that could require an immediate suspension of a doctor who is not tested within 12 hours of a so-called “adverse event,” the term used when any medical procedure goes wrong. That requirement could be impractical or even impossible — particularly in a case when a doctor is called away for some reason.

The measure would apply only to doctors in hospitals, not those practicing on their own. Nor would it apply to nurses. If Californians feel the need to test doctors for drugs or alcohol, there should be a much more thoughtful approach.

The other add-on would require health care providers to consult a statewide database of prescription drug history before prescribing painkillers and certain other controlled substances. The idea is to keep patients from “doctor shopping” for multiple prescriptions.

Again, it’s a bad solution to a real problem. The statewide database is nowhere near complete, and the data in it are unreliable. It’s not ready for prime time, and burdening doctors and nurses with a requirement to use it makes no sense.

Proponents of Proposition 46 are trying to trick voters into raising malpractice awards. It should be noted that state Attorney General Kamala Harris joined in with the sleight of hand when she wrote the title of the measure to focus on the drug and alcohol testing and not specifying that the measure is about raising noneconomic malpractice damages.

We strongly encourage voters to reject Proposition 46.