Power to the People: States to Vote on Abortion, Marijuana, Voter ID

In several states across the country voters will have the opportunity to vote on ballot measures addressing abortion, marijuana, and voting policies.


Understandably, congressional and governors’ races receive significant media coverage. However, they’re not the only races on the ballot. Voters in several states will have the opportunity to vote on ballot measures addressing abortion, marijuana, and voting policies.

  • Voters in five states – California, Michigan, Vermont, Kentucky, and Montana – will vote on abortion-related referenda.
  • If they pass, California, Michigan, and Vermont could expand abortion access beyond Roe’s guidelines, while Kentucky’s provision would establish that there’s no right to an abortion to the state constitution.
  • These measures come after voters in Kansas rejected a ballot measure eliminating the right to an abortion from the state constitution by a nearly 2-to-1 margin in August.
  • Five states will vote on whether to legalize marijuana for recreational use: Arkansas, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Maryland.
  • Voting-related policies are on the ballot in seven states. Nevada’s Question 3 would establish open top-five primaries and ranked-choice voting in the general election, similar to Alaska’s system. Connecticut residents will vote on a referendum on allowing no-excuse early voting.
  • Michigan’s Proposal 2 would enshrine nine days of early voting into the state constitution., while Arizona and Nebraska will vote on new voter ID requirements. Voters in Ohio and Louisiana can approve constitutional amendments to ban non-citizens from voting in local elections.
  • Alabama, Louisiana, Oregon, Tennessee, and Vermont will vote on ballot measures repealing parts of their state constitutions that allow for enslavement or servitude as punishment for crimes or, in Vermont, payment of debts.


reporting from the left side of the aisle


  • New York Magazine predicted Montana may be the lone bright spot for pro-life activists, who author Ed Kilgore derisively calls “the forced-birth lobby.” Montanans will vote on the “Medical Care Requirements for Born-Alive Infants” ballot measure to ensure infants born alive during an abortion receive adequate medical care.
  • CNN wrote the three abortion-related ballot measures in California, Michigan, and Vermont go far beyond the standard set by Roe v. Wade. The California provision would allow abortion up until the point of birth and the Michigan ballot measure would permit minors to seek abortions without parental consent.
  • The New York Times covered how Republican candidates are juggling abortion with a focus on Tudor Dixon, the GOP candidate for governor in Michigan. Dixon has criticized Michigan’s ballot measure for invalidating parental consent laws and pointed out voters could vote for the referendum and oust Whitmer at the same time if abortion access is their top concern.



  • Fox News covered the major changes to Arizona’s election laws that’ll come into force if 10 Republican-backed ballot measures pass. One measure would tighten up identification requirements for mail-in ballots and three others would change the state’s processes for putting voter initiatives on the ballot.
  • Breitbart covered some of the more unusual ballot questions, like Colorado’s initiative to decriminalize possession of psychedelic mushrooms or California’s provisions that could legalize sports betting.
  • The editors of National Review urged voters to reject Michigan’s “radical” abortion amendment that would make Michigan the most pro-abortion state in the Union. The amendment would, among other things, make enforcing laws against “ghastly” partial-birth abortions nearly impossible to enforce.


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© Dominic Moore, 2022