Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Progressives Win Big on Ballot Questions

Republicans took the Senate last night, but progressives won across the board on nearly every popular ballot question. Voters in four deeply Republican states raised the minimum wage, San Francisco upped theirs to $15. Massachusetts voted for an unprecedented 40 hours of paid sick leave. Voters in Maui banned GMO crops despite $8 million in attack ads by Monsanto and Dow in the most expensive campaign in Hawaii's history.  Voters in Tallahassee backed a referendum to limit the influence of money in politics.  Marijuana legalization passed in DC, Oregon, and Alaska. California voters made a serious dent in racist mass imprisonment and the war on drugs. Washington state voted for universal gun background checks. Natural gas fracking was banned in 4 counties including in the Texas town where it was invented. Colorado and North Dakota voters protected women's reproductive rights by voting down restrictions to abortion access. 
The takeaway from this election is that if we want progressive reforms, popular ballots might be the most effective electoral strategy.   Let's up and down vote on the most important social, economic, and environmental justice questions of our time.  It's time we bypass the two-party system corrupted by corporate money. Who's ready for direct democracy?  What are your thoughts?

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