Trends in State Initiatives and Referenda

When comparing the use of initiatives and referenda, one can argue that the initiative process has the greater impact on the day-to-day operations of state governments. Little debate surrounds the use of the referendum process because most of the issues that are placed on the ballot by state legislatures are there because the law requires a public vote. For this reason and because of the fact that great controversy surrounds the initiative process itself, this article will focus on the use of the statewide initiative process.

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About the Author
M. Dane Waters is the founder, president and co-chairman of the Initiative & Referendum Institute, a nonprofit educational and research organization dedicated to educating people on the initiative and referendum processes. He has lectured widely in the United States and abroad and has written and edited numerous articles and books.

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