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Ballotpedia:Analysis of the 2011 ballot measures

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This page is a research report about 2011 ballot measures.
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2011 ballot measures
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Calendar2011 local measures

Citizen initiative changes

See also: Chart of 2011 ballot measure changes

21 of the 26 I&R states do not have any citizen initiatives on their 2011 ballot. Of the 9 total states with measures on the ballot, 5 are initiative and referendum states: Colorado, Maine, Mississippi, Ohio and Washington. All five initiative states have initiatives on the 2011 ballot.

  • 2011 features 4 more initiatives than 2009
  • Maine featured less initiatives (2) on their 2011 ballot than 2009
  • Colorado, Mississippi, Ohio and Washington all saw initiatives increases on their 2011 ballots
  • Of the five states, Colorado and Mississippi did not have initiatives on the 2009 ballot.
# of initiatives in 2009 # of initiatives in 2011 Change between the two years
Totals: 8 12 +4

Legislative referral changes

See also: Chart of 2011 ballot measure changes

In total 2009 featured 24 legislative referrals, while 2011 features 22. 2011 has two less referrals on the ballot than 2009. California (-6) and Louisiana (+6) had the most significant changes in the number legislative referrals on the ballot.

Of the nine states that featured legislative measures on either 2009 and/or 2011; Texas is the only state with a double digit number of referrals on both the 2009 and 2011 ballots. California, on the other hand, is the only state that did not have any legislative referrals on the ballot in 2011.

Three did not have legislative referrals on the ballot in 2009, but did in 2011. The states include: Arkansas, Louisiana, and Washington.

# of referrals in 2009 # of referrals in 2011 Change between the two years
Totals: 24 22 -2
Ballot measure researchers
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Al OrtizBailey Ludlam

Issues on the ballot

See also: Chart of 2011 ballot measure issues

All ballot measures are assigned at least one issue category. The same goes for 2011's 34 certified ballot measures. The chart below highlights the issues scheduled to appear on 2011's ballot. As you may notice, some measures fall into more one issue category. The total number of listed measures and issues therefore may exceed 34. Both legislative referrals and citizen initiatives were included in this analysis.

  • A total of 2 issues were found to be the most popular among 2011 ballot measures: taxes and state budgets.
  • Taxes ranked as the most popular issue with a total of 8 measures. The same is true for 2009, when 8 measures also appeared in the category.
  • Unlike even-numbered years, odd years have few categories appear on the ballot. 2011 features only 15 political issues, compared to 2010's measures which touched on more than 40 different topics.

The chart below highlights the most popular issues for 2011:

Top Issues # measures per issue
Taxes 8
State budgets 6
Administration of government 4
Healthcare 3
Gambling 3
Elections and campaigns 3

Initiative activity

See also: Chart of 2011 initiative activity

Although there are 26 states with some form of direct democracy, only a handful of states allow odd-year ballot access for proposed initiative and referendums. This year, a total of 5 initiative and referendum states have measures on the ballot for public vote. In those states, however, a grand total of 137 initiatives were filed with intent to circulate for signature gathering. Of those 137 initiatives, only 12 made it on the ballot. Those 12 include two veto referendums - Maine and Ohio. In the findings below, we took a deeper look at the filed initiatives, those that were certified, and the reasons behind the failure of initiatives not placed on the ballot.

This analysis did not include legislative proposals or referrals to the ballot.

# of initiatives proposed # initiatives certified in 2010  % certified
Totals: 137 12 8.76%
  • Of the 5 initiative & referendum states on the ballot, Washington had the most filed initiatives at 80.
  • The state with the second most filed initiatives was Colorado at 36.
  • Maine had the highest percentage of filed initiatives certified for the ballot at 50%.
  • Maine had 6 filed initiatives, with 3 making the ballot.
  • The lowest percentage of filed initiatives to make the ballot was Colorado at 3%, with one certified initiative out of 36.

Like 2010, the percentage of filed initiatives certified for the ballot in 2011 was around 8%. 2010 saw 8.42% of the 606 filed initiatives make the ballot, compared to 8.76% in 2011.

By the numbers

For measures that did not make the ballot:

  • 35.7% turned their efforts toward a future ballot
  • 21.9% were withdrawn or expired
  • 18.2% of measures failed for reasons not explained on the state elections website.
  • 10.9% were rejected by that state's Secretary of State or Attorney General
  • 4.3% missed deadline or signature requirements

No lawsuits struck measures off the ballot this year, but attempts were made in Mississippi, where 3 lawsuits were filed against 2 measures on the ballot. Those lawsuits failed. All three original 2011 Mississippi measures are still on the ballot.

NOTE: The chart below specifically details the number of proposed initiatives per state and the number/percentage of successfully certified initiatives for 2011 ballots.

Legend


     Highest percent certified for 2010      0% certified for 2010

I&R State # of initiatives proposed # initiatives certified in 2011  % certified
Colorado 36 1 3%
Maine 6 3 50%
Mississippi 7 3 43%
Ohio 8 2 25%
Washington 80 3 4%
Totals: 137 12 8.76%

Pre-election campaign contributions

See also: 2011 pre-election ballot measure campaign contributions

NOTE: Campaign contribution reports in various states will change after the 2011 election is complete. Featured totals indicate totals as of October 2011 and will be updated once final reports are submitted. The following results and statistics will change. See Ballotpedia's report on post-election campaign contributions.


A total of 34 ballot questions were certified for 9 statewide ballots in 2011, however only 11 ballot measures had any type of campaign finance activity before the general election. A total of $43,706,549.62 was contributed to ballot measures in 2011, according to official reports filed as of October 2011.



Statewide

  • Highest statewide contributions: Washington ($37,540,879.09)
  • Lowest statewide contributions: Mississippi ($65,759.84)

Measures

Issues

  • Highest contribution total: Alcohol ($34,412,103.09)
  • Lowest contribution total: Gambling ($278,363)[2]

Post-election campaign contributions

See also: 2011 ballot measure campaign contributions

A total of 34 ballot questions were certified for 9 statewide ballots in 2011, however only 15 ballot measures have had any type of campaign finance activity. A total of $85,726,675.61 was contributed to ballot measures in 2011, compared to $43,706,549.62 in Ballotpedia's pre-election contribution report, according to official reports filed as of December 2011.

Statewide

  • Highest statewide contributions: Ohio ($41,475,433.48)
  • Lowest statewide contributions: Arkansas ($100,000)

Measures

Issues

  • Highest contribution total: Labor ($41,277,413.81)
  • Lowest contribution total: Bond issues ($278,363)[4]

Measures throughout the years

The chart below highlights the numbers of measures that appeared on the ballot from 2000 through 2010. This includes 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.


Legend


     Highest in the category

Year Initiatives Legislative referrals Other measures TOTAL
2011 12 22 0 34
2010 50 130 4 184
2009 8 24 0 32
2008 74 92 8 174
2007 4 39 1 44
2006 83 140 3 226
2005 19 26 0 45
2004 65 107 1 173
2003 7 60 1 68
2002 55 162 6 223
2001 4 35 0 39
2000 82 151 2 235

See also

Pencil.pngBallotpedia articles

The Breakdown series

References

  1. Ballot measures with zero contributions were not included.
  2. Categories with no contributions made towards ballot measures were not considered for this category.
  3. Ballot measures with zero contributions were not included.
  4. Categories with no contributions made towards ballot measures were not considered for this category.