All About Cannabis Taxes on the Ballot

Nov 28, 2023 By Triston Martin

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Hundreds of state policy problems were resolved in the midterm election, including whether to increase the minimum wage for some low-income employees, increase taxes on the wealthy in Massachusetts, and keep abortion legal in several states. After the most costly initiative campaign in American history was spent in California trying to get voters to approve internet gambling, the effort failed.

Voters approved minimum wage increases in Nevada and Nebraska. Missouri (Amendment 3) and Maryland (Question 4) were the only two states to approve the legalization of marijuana at the polls; measures in Arkansas (Issue 4) and North Dakota and South Dakota all failed (Initiated Measure 27).


About 56 million voters were asked their opinion on abortion availability months after the Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade ruling.

Voters in Kentucky shot down an amendment that would have barred abortions under the state's constitution (Amendment 2). With votes still being counted, Montana's Referendum 131, which would mandate medical attention for babies born alive following an abortion attempt, Cesarean section, or labor induction, was narrowly losing 52% to 48%.

Voters in Kansas showed a similar trend in August when they rejected another anti-abortion ballot proposal, and those results were replicated here.

Conservative focus group analyst Sarah Longwell stated that voters in states that typically elect Republicans to office were paying careful attention to these races because of concerns about an "abortion ticket-split" scenario. They will vote in large numbers to protect the right to have an abortion and the ability to get one. When multiple people have conflicting priorities, things get more complicated.

The right to abortion was added to the Vermont Constitution by popular vote (Second Question). Proposal 3, a similar measure in Michigan, was also approved by voters. In California, Proposition 1, a constitutional amendment establishing a fundamental right to abortion and contraceptives, received 65 percent of the vote. Voters in Alaska ultimately decided against having a constitutional convention because of the abortion issue.


Local organizations and unions in Massachusetts successfully imposed a 4% surcharge on millionaires to fund infrastructure improvements in education and transportation.

A move to further tax those making over $2 million (Proposition 30) in California to raise money for fighting wildfires and constructing electric vehicle infrastructure was defeated by voters, giving Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom his way. Nearly 58% of people decided to vote no. Lyft Inc., a transportation network firm, had backed the campaign.

Fifty-five percent of Coloradans voted in favor of a measure to restrict tax breaks (Proposition FF). Nearly two-thirds of voters supported a ballot initiative to lower the state income tax rate from 4.55% to 4.4% (Proposition 121).

The Income Tax Rate

Massachusetts is raising the income tax rate for those above $1 million. Initiative 433 will raise Nebraska's minimum wage from $9 per hour to $15 per hour by 2026, and Initiative 82 will raise the District of Columbia's minimum wage from $5.35 per hour for tipped employees to $16.10 per hour by 2027.

Voters in Nevada were presented with a constitutional amendment proposal (Question 2) that would raise the state's minimum wage to $12 per hour by 2024 and do away with the current system of tiered minimum pay rates based on whether or not workers are provided health insurance. The Associated Press reported that the yes voters were up 54% to 46% in unofficial results.

Voters in Tennessee (Amendment 1) and Illinois (Right to Collective Bargaining and Representation by Union) have established protections against mandatory union membership as a condition of employment in their respective constitutions.


Those polled in Louisiana were asked, " (Addendum 7) State Representative Edmond Jordan (D), who proposed the amendment, stated the wording was unclear and begged voters to reject it, promising to draught a revised version for a future ballot.

Proposal 2, which would have amended the Vermont Constitution to outlaw "slavery and indentured servitude in any form the Constitutional provision allowing for the involuntary servitude of convicted criminals removed (Constitutional Amendment 3).

Involuntary slavery "for the punishment of crime, of which the party shall have been duly convicted" was abolished by popular vote in Alabama (Recompiled Constitutional Ratification Question). As part of the proposed revisions, the following sentence would be removed from the constitution

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