What Else Are You Voting On?

I am very excited about seeing the outcome of this. If this passes and the 01/03 tax cuts expire the top marginal wage rate in CA will be over 59%, the highest rate in the developed world for taxes on wage income (as measured by the OECD).

It makes a wonderful juxtaposition of a natural experiment with the CBO changing their labor supply elasticity model, with labor being more sensitive to tax rates. Empirical research across the world has settled on the substitution effect dominating and that’s why the rest of the developed world has moved to a lower corporate rate/personal income tax structure.

California steadily marching in the opposite direction is great for policy studies.

There have been some really sketchy ads on the radio about the “right to repair” law in question 1. I heard a short blip telling people that “This was taken care of over the summer. Just skip question 1”.

From what I can tell, it’s just about making sure that independent shops have the same access to vehicle documentation as the dealers do. Which I think is a good thing so that dealers can’t have a monopoly on repairing your car.

In Idaho, we’re voting on some education laws. Not terribly exciting or sexy, but if you’re interested in the details:

Damn straight. (No pun intended.)

I have nothing against gambling, but when there’s gambling everywhere the revenues will fall off, and a huge vegas-style casino in National Harbor will likely be a disgusting hellhole within 5 years, so no on 7. Kids of immigrants, documented or not, deserve an education, so yes on 4. I have to look into the others.

Minnesota’s interesting this year.

Amy Klobuchar’s in one of the least competitive senate races in the country. Polls have her 30 points up on her challenger, who I can’t even name off the top of my head. Keep an eye on her - I wouldn’t be surprised if she was headed for more national prominence.

We have two big amendments on the ballot - one that will double extra super ban gay marriage (which is already illegal) and one poorly-worded voter ID amendment. Amazingly, it looks like a better-than-even chance to defeat the gay marriage ban, which would be the first such measure to go down. I’m hoping the voter ID one rides it’s coat tails, since it’s really a bad law. Seriously, even if you favor voter ID, this is a bad one. More on the campaign to defeat these after tuesday - Minnesota United For All Families has run a really interesting and effective campaign.

The first/only african american muslim congressman (Keith Ellison) is going to cruise to re-election despite some ugliness in the campaign. I’ll vote for him - he’s basically a generic democrat who comes with additional trolling of the crazies.

Speaking of trolling the crazies, Bachmann (not my district) finally got herself a real opponent in Jim Graves. If nothing else, he’ll be remembered as the guy with the “I Dig Graves” campaign t-shirts at the state fair. It’s a close race, but I don’t think he’ll pull it out.

And then the usual assortment of judges, school board, soil and water supervisor, etc. None of which are all that interesting.

No especially interesting propositions in Missouri, but I did get to vote against Todd “Legitimate Rape” Akin. That felt good :)


North Dakota’s constitutional measure 3 is bizarre:

The right of farmers and ranchers to engage in modern farming and ranching practices shall be forever guaranteed in this state. No law shall be enacted which abridges the right of farmers and ranchers to employ agricultural technology, modern livestock production and ranching practices.

“Modern farming and ranching practices”… what does that even mean? Who can say that I’m wrong if I decide that chipped teeth and human blood makes the best fertilizer so I start punching the authors of this measure in the face?

Telefrog already mentioned Prop 74 regarding same sex marriage in Washington State, but he didn’t mention the other biggie we’ve got on the ballot… Initiative 502, decriminalizing marijuana.

From the voter’s guide:

This measure would license and regulate marijuana production, distribution, and possession for persons over twenty-one; remove state-law criminal and civil penalties for activities that it authorizes; tax marijuana sales; and earmark marijuana-related revenues.

I think a small handful of other states (though I forget which ones) have something similar on their ballots, and I should point out that this is different from medical marijuana. This is licensing and taxing it for recreational use.

Should be interesting to see how this plays out, and how other states will react if it passes.

Hawaii doesn’t have initiatives, only advisories. There should be a happy medium between no initiative like we have and the craziness of the California initiative system. Oregon’s seems like a reasonable compromise.

Obama will carry the state in a landslide, and despite two competent Republican challengers for a Senate seat (the previous and pretty popular Governor) and Congressional seat, the Democrats will win.

The big race here is for the mayor of Honolulu. The current mayor got primaried out, the race is between a two term Governor (Democrat of course) and the city manager and Democratic party activist. But the Mayor race is really a vote for building an expensive and unsightly light rail system.

So I was going thought my mail today, and there was an envelope with pictures of Obama and Feinstein on the front with “Attention Democratic Voter” in big bold letters on the front. Inside was a card with the “Democratic” endorsements and a voter guide. Then I looked at the one I already had from the actual, official Democratic Party voter guide…they all matched except Prop 37 (the GMO labelling prop), which was down as NO on the fake one.

That’s some pretty snaky shit, Monsanto. I was halfway convinced to vote No, but fuck you, I voted Yes.

In NH, there was a question to add constitutional amendment to prevent ever adding a sales or income tax, pushed by our dark red legislature. It requires a 67% super-majority to pass, but it probably will.


Does no one have any integrity in today’s America? There are plenty of reasons to defeat Prop 37 without resorting to outright deception.

Last week there was an story about a false voter guide that showed a weird mix of recommendations. Turned out the guide was put out by a company that was paid for each recommendation. It was a paid ad.

Well, as I said above Monsanto isn’t alone in doing this. But I agree, Prop 37 is flawed and will only lead to attorneys making money.

30: yes
I don’t much like it, but I don’t see much of a reasonable alternative right now. I voted for Brown to help us fix this mess, so voting to support enabling him to follow through is right.

32: no

Ugh. Pretty blatant anti-union.

36: yes

I hate three-strikes. It’s not working.

37: no

Horribly written. Would much prefer a stronger push for good science to understand the impact, or lack thereof, from GMO rather than scare tactics and marketing crap. That said, I still feel dirty, 'cuz fuck Monsanto in the ear.

38: no

Alternative to 30.


34: yes.

Don’t much care for the death penalty in general, and the economics of it make it a no-brainer for me.

39: yes
40: yes
Same basic reasoning as StGabe below.

36: yes

I hate three-strikes. It’s not working.

I would disagree but that is for another thread.

Indeed. :)

Also, thanks for starting this thread. It’s interesting to see folks’ takes on different things and see some of the varying regional issues from elsewhere.

We have a similar ballot item in Michigan. Can we just give them all the name “The Ensuring Legislative Gridlock Until the End of Time Itself Initiative” or something along those lines?

Michigan also has a ballot item requiring voter approval of international bridges and tunnels to Canada, a proposal that would benefit only the guy who owns the currently standing bridge between Detroit and Canada. If it’s not rejected I’ll be very, very disappointed in the voters here.

CA propositions:

30 – yes, clearly necessary at this point
31 – no, too much cruft for a constitution amendment
32 – no, duh
33 – no, not gonna vote for what is basically an insurance marketing scheme
34 – yes! whether you think the death penalty is just or not, it’s not worth killing innocent people
35 – abstain, didn’t seem like the sort of thing I should be deciding through a ballot measure
36 – yes, our prisons are way overused and this is a step in the right direction
37 – no, though I’m generally in favor of improving information for consumers, I’m not convinced that GMO’s need required labeling; non-GMO stuff is free to label as such
38 – no, seems well-intentioned and not terrible but 30 is the one that has a chance at passing
39 – yes, in favor of increased corporate taxation; only thing that bugs me is the random earmarking of some money towards “green tech” with so many budget woes right now
40 – yes, the redistricting seems to have been a success from several metrics I care about (more fair and as a result of that, helping out more liberal candidates)