Ballotpedia puts a bow on 2012 ballot measure analysis

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December 21, 2012

By Kristen Horn:


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January 2013 marks the beginning of a new year for ballot measures, as Ballotpedia will turn to a new batch of election dates, legislative sessions, proposals and campaigns. Before 2012 ends, Ballotpedia has completed the last section of the 2012 ballot measure analysis, which breaks down ballot measure issues that were on the ballot

As part of Ballotpedia's analysis following the November 6, 2012 general election a comprehensive chart was created to take a closer look at political categories.

With this final component of 2012 ballot measure analysis completed, Ballotpedia presents a rundown of what was completed over the course of the process. The main page of Ballotpedia's 2012 ballot measure analysis can be found here:

Statistical summary

This component includes election results of measures on all 2012 election ballots, including November 6. Also included is a breakdown of how many citizen initiatives were approved and defeated as well as legislative referrals. In 2012, 188 ballot questions were presented. Of the 188, 62.7% were approved and 35.6% were defeated.

Initiative and Legislative referral changes

Citizen initiatives played a significant part in 2012, as a total of 63 appeared for certain state voters to decide on, 13 more than 2010. A chart was compiled by Ballotpedia depicting the changes in the number of citizen initiatives on statewide ballots when comparing 2010 and 2012. Also included on the chart page was a chart showing the changes in the number of legislative referrals on statewide ballots when comparing 2010 and 2012. A total of 125 legislative referrals appeared, 9 less than the 2010 ballot measures.

Initiative activity

Before initiatives can be certified for a statewide ballot, they must endure a lengthy process beforehand. With this in mind, Ballotpedia conducted a closer look at each initiative and referendum state, observing how many total initiatives were filed, how many of those initiatives were certified by state, and the grand total of initiatives filed across the country. The final number of certified initiatives turned out to be 63, 11.1% of the proposed 566 initiatives.

Measures this past decade

A brief look at the past decade's ballot measures was included in this part of the analysis, as measures that appeared on the ballot from 2000 through 2012 were highlighted by the numbers. This included all citizen initiatives (initiated state statutes, initiated constitutional amendments and veto referendums), legislative referrals (legislatively-referred constitutional amendments and legislatively-referred state statutes), and advisory measures. Other issues like marriage, marijuana, health care and more were presented on the ballots and gained a noteworthy amount of media coverage.

Campaign contributions

Campaign contributions were taken into account when putting together the 2012 ballot measure analysis, as campaign contributions for each ballot measure that appeared on a 2012 ballot was examined. Total contributions were calculated for each state with ballot measures, supporting and opposing ballot measure campaigns in each state, and each individual ballot measure on the ballot that received contributions. Ballot measures were also ranked from highest to lowest contribution total.

In 2012, California had 4 of the top five propositions with high contribution dollar amounts, Maryland being the fifth. The propositions with the least contributions went to Alabama, Missouri, Montana, and two in Maine.

Tax and bond issues

Ballotpedia also conducted an overview of 2012 bond and tax measures that were on the ballot in 2012. Also included in this thorough analysis is a comparison between 2008, 2010 and 2012 bond issues found on the ballot.

Tax issues were also glanced at, with 2012 tax issues compared to 2010 and 2008 as well.

Read more about this analysis here.

Main analysis article

Full chart pages

See also

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