Yesterday’s election saw voters in seven states deciding 22 ballot measures. Among the noteworthy initiatives and referenda:
- After five vetoes by cranky Governor LePage, Maine voters approved expanding Medicaid under the robust Affordable Care Act. That expansion could provide 70,000 Mainers with affordable health coverage. Maine voters also approved a $105-million bond issue to repair roads and bridges and rejected a new casino,
- Ohio voters rejected a prescription drug price cap by a 4-to-1 margin, a slightly larger ratio than the margin by which the pharmaceutical industry outspent proponents. A petition to place a similar measure on South Dakota’s 2018 ballot was just submitted to our Secretary of State Monday. Ohio voters did stroke California billionaire Henry T. Nicholas’s vanity by approving his generic crime victims bill of rights named for his poor dead sister. While Nicholas never visited South Dakota to promote his ballot measure here in 2016, he appeared in person at the victory rally in Columbus.
- New Yorkers said no to a constitutional convention but approved letting judges take pensions away from elected officials busted for corruption.
- New Jersey voters approved borrowing $125 million to upgrade their public libraries and preventing the state from diverting pollution settlement funds to non-environmental uses.
- Washington State voters rejected three tax increases approved by their legislature. However, strangely, these three “advisory” votes have no legal impact… which leads me to ask why Washington would put anything on the ballot that isn’t binding.