BALLOT MEASURE RESULTS
Marijuana: Supporters of decriminalizing marijuana had a big — but not perfect — night as well.
Two states appear to have voted to allow marijuana for recreational use — not just for medical purposes. Colorado voted for such a measure with 53 percent support, and Washington state looks headed toward approval with 55 percent. One state rejected a similar measure: Oregon, where it garnered only 45 percent support.
New medical-marijuana measures were less successful. One passed overwhelmingly in Massachusetts (63 percent), but Montana voters are poised to curb an existing medical marijuana law (57 percent of the vote so far) and Arkansas medical marijuana supporters fell just short, winning 49 percent at the ballot box. Arkansas would have been the first state in the South to approve any law on marijuana.
Criminal justice: California voters faced three criminal-justice measures: A measure to end the death penalty was on its way to failing, winning just 47 percent of the vote; a measure to ease portions of the state’s “three strikes” sentencing law was winning better than two-thirds of the vote; and a measure to crack down on human trafficking was winning by more than a 4-to-1 margin.
Affirmative action: Oklahoma voters, by a 3-to-2 margin, approved a measure to end racial preferences.
Same-sex marriage: Voters in Maine and Maryland backed measures to permit marriage equality, with 53 percent of the vote in Maine and 52 percent of the vote in Maryland. They became the first states to affirmatively approve same-sex marriage at the ballot box, joining others that had done so legislatively or judicially.
A third state weighing a same-sex marriage initiative, Washington state, had counted only about half its vote by early Wednesday morning, with 52 percent in support.
In another victory for supporters of same-sex marriage, Minnesota voters narrowly rejected a measure that would have banned the practice.
Immigration: Immigration advocates had a mixed night. Marylanders voted by a strong margin — 59 percent to 41 percent — to allow undocumented immigrants the same in-state tuition breaks as legal residents, commonly known as the DREAM Act.
But in Montana, voters are backing a measure to deny services to undocumented immigrants by a massive, 4-to-1 margin.
Abortion: Voters delivered a mixed message on abortion. They rejected a measure in Florida that would have barred public funds from being used to pay for abortions or for health benefits that include abortion coverage. The measure won only 45 percent of the vote.
But voters in Montana easily approved a measure to require parental notification before a minor could get an abortion. The measure won 70 percent of the vote.
Here for more results round up of other ballot measures around the country
Hawai‘i’s FIRSTS in Congress!
Mazie Hirono is the first female Asian American ever elected to the U.S. Senate!
Tulsi Gabbard is the first female combat veterans ever elected to Congress!
Interview with Tulsi Gabbard
Note: More on Hawai‘i’s election results and Kat’s comments to come.
Here are some results to start…