Much has been made about the results of California’s ballot measures. Some articles denounce the system as convoluted, and others praise it for providing the people a voice. Californian voters sent a loud message to the government: deal with the budget. Others unhappy with the result want a constitutional convention to do away with the system.

What do you think should happen?

Some interesting articles:

LA TIMES: Distrust of lawmakers came through loud and clear

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger discussing the results of the California ballot measures.


“Don’t come to us for extra help. That was the message,” Schwarzenegger said after a meeting with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

“And you know something. I appreciate that when you hear that from the people. It gives us a chance to go and adjust, and say ‘OK, we went in the wrong direction. Now lets go in the right direction and lets go do what the people want.’ “

The question in Maine

Tue, May 19 2009 — Source:

As anyone who follows ballot measures knows, the language in a ballot questions matters a lot.The Maine Secretary of State just released the language that will be on the ballot there if opponents assemble the necessary 55,087 certified signatures.

Read the story at

After voting absentee in an election that will go a long way in determining the state’s finances, Schwarzenegger flew to Washington to meet with President Barack Obama as he announced higher fuel-efficiency standards.

Read the story at AP

One of the big political stories of 2009 has been the surge in American public approval for gay marriage and the growing number of states - including the heartland bastion of Iowa - that have legalized the practice, but here in Pennsylvania the pages of this political thriller are still blank.

Read the story at

If California voters defy expectations and pass the half-dozen propositions on the May 19 ballot, it will be a start toward filling the yawning hole in the state’s budget. But it’s only a start.

Read the story at Alamanac News

Gov. O’Malley also signed a bill that authorizes the use of speed monitoring cameras around
the state. Opponents of the new law are attempting to challenge it through a statewide referendum initiative.

Read the story at Maryland Daily Record

Morning voters in West Lampeter Township leaned toward lifting a 74-year-old ban on alcohol sales in their municipality, an informal survey of early balloting found.
In decisive but not overwhelming numbers, early-morning voters told the New Era they believe alcohol sales would “bring the township into the 21st century” and provide additional tax revenue and jobs.

Read the story at Lancaster New Era

Just hours ago Washington governor, Chris Gregoire signed into law a bill that will afford certain elderly domestic couples as well as same sex couples all of the same legal rights and benefits as any married couple in the state. The bill falls short of recognizing same sex marriage and places no obligations on the state’s churches to do so.

With time running out, a group backed by the Culinary Workers Union is again asking the Nevada Supreme Court to order two anti-redevelopment measures to be placed on the June 2 municipal ballot.

Read the rest of the story at Mercury News

Yesterday, Citizens in Charge Foundation President Paul Jacob was in Missouri testifying against House Bill 228. The legislation would harm the initiative and referendum process by imposing a residency restriction, banning the payment of petition circulators on a per signature basis and prohibiting citizens from carrying more than one petition at a time.

Tim Eyman, an activist in Washington State, just sent out an email announcing his legal victory of Initiative 960, requiring the state legislature to have a 2/3 majority vote in order to increase taxes. The Supreme Court unanimously rejected challenges to I-960.

Many times initiatives which have passed at the ballot box are challenged in the court system. In this case, Mr. Eyman won the challenge and the taxpayer protection initiative will stand. He writes:


OLYMPIA, Wash. — As lawmakers chop their way out of an estimated $8 billion budget deficit, voices in the Democratic majority’s political base are crying out for higher taxes to save favorite state services.

So where’s the money? One place to look is the so-called “shopping list,” a state Revenue Department compilation of possible sources of additional money for the state.

State Representative Owen Drake of Leeds said today that he will introduce into the Alabama House of Representatives on March 10th a bill to reorganize the Jefferson County Government. The bill creates a separation of executive from legislative powers of the county. It provides for a Chief Executive…to establish agenda initiative and voter referendum provisions;… (READ MORE)