Capitol Comments

Don't miss the latest complimentary webinar in The Council of State Governments' Policy Webinar Series. "Health Insurance Exchanges: Understanding State Options and Deadlines" will take place on Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2-3 p.m. EST.

Voters yesterday sent mixed messages.  The success of two popular referenda to repeal laws passed this year and the recall of two powerful legislators is seen by many as a rebuke to Republicans, who gained power in the 2010 elections.   The party control of two state legislative chambers is still up for grabs, with Republicans making gains in Virginia and Mississippi, and a much-watched "personhood" ballot initiative failed in Mississippi, where supporters thought they had the best chance for success. 

Today, voters in seven states will vote on 27 ballot initiatives.  These include two citizen-driven efforts to overturn laws passed by the legislature, and controversial measures related to taxes, abortion, elections, and gambling. 

Tomorrow is election day, with legislative elections being held in three states: Mississippi, New Jersey, and Virginia.  Gubernatorial elections will be held in Mississippi and Kentucky. 

Yesterday, Colorado voters overwhelmingly defeated a measure (Initiative 25) that would have increased taxes to raise over $3 billion for education.   Denver voters also soundly defeated a measure (Initiative 300) that would have required businesses to provide all employees with paid sick leave.

This year, Colorado was the only state with an initiative to increase income taxes on the ballot.