In 2016, 163 statewide ballot initiatives have been certified for the ballot in 35 states, affecting over 205 million residents. Of these measures, 72 were put on the ballot by citizens through signature petitions, rather than by state legislatures. Eight measures appeared on pre-November election ballots, leaving 155 measures for statewide ballots in November.
Notable topics on the ballot
Ballot measures often touch on hot-button issues. The 2016 election will not be an exception; it will include ballot measures on a number of controversial topics, including:
- Marijuana - A record number of measures to legalize or decriminalize marijuana have been proposed for 2016. (Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Maine, Massachusetts, Montana, Nevada, North Dakota)
- Minimum Wage - Measures aiming to increase the minimum wage are on the ballots in many states (Arizona, Colorado, Maine, Washington). South Dakotans will vote on a veto referendum to do the opposite by lowering, rather than raising, the minimum wage for minors.
- Gun Control - Four states have ballot measures that would regulate the purchase of firearms. (California, Maine, Nevada, Washington)
- Healthcare - Several notable healthcare-related measures have been certified for 2016 ballots, including California's Drug Price Standards Initiative, Proposition 61, and Colorado Amendment 69, which would create the nation's first single-payer healthcare system.