Controversial topics were up for decision this past general election and many propositions passed by narrow margins. As the results of the ballots roll in, students reflect on their expectations for the some of the more narrowly decided propositions.
After years of fiscal cuts to schools and public safety, Proposition 30 was narrowly approved with a 53.9 percent vote. The proposition will increase taxes on those earning over $250,000 for seven years and increase sales taxes by 1/4 cent for four years. The revenue from these taxes will go to fund schools and public safety, among other government expenses.
Karen Gordon, a senior in creative writing, supported Proposition 30.
“I voted for it because it would go into effect right away and we would not be threatened by the budget cuts Governor Jerry Brown said he would have to put into effect,” Gordon said.
The revenue from Proposition 30 will average about $6 billion annually over the next few years.
Proposition 33 sought to allow insurers to set prices based on whether a driver previously carried insurance with any insurance company. Proposition 33 failed to pass with only 45.4 percent voter approval.
Currently, Californians with car insurance earn a discount for carrying continuous coverage. If a driver switches insurances carriers, they will lose that discount.
Automobile insurers will continue to be prohibited from providing a discount to new customers switching from other insurers with a history of continuous coverage.
Chloe Annand, a 1st year English major, said she voted “no” on the proposition because she thought it was unfair and would discourage new drivers from getting insurance.
Terrilynn Cantlon, a 2nd year MA candidate in Literature, thought that the proposition would lead to fewer insured drivers.
“I was glad it didn’t pass,” Cantlon said, “it seems to stigmatize people that maybe are lower income and cannot afford long term insurance by charging them more for the same product and give preferential rates to people who can afford long-term insurance,” Cantlon said.
Proposition 34 would have repealed the death penalty and replaced it with life imprisonment without possibility of parole, applying retroactively to existing death sentences. It failed to pass with 52.8 percent voter rejection.
“I was surprised how close the death penalty results were,” said Bridget Nixon, an undeclared fresh-woman and first time voter. “Deciding whether or not to kill a criminal was hard,” said Nixon.
Nixon said she voted “no,” and said she believes the possibility that California will execute an innocent person is low because the state rarely utilizes capital punishment.
“It should be an option if someone is just that horrible that we cannot otherwise have them part of our community anymore,” Nixon said.
Proposition 37 would require the labeling of food sold to consumers made from plants or animals with genetic material changed in specified ways to be labeled as such. The initiative was defeated by voters with a 53.1 percent vote against it.
Genetically engineered foods sold in California continue not to have specific labeling requirements.
Jordan Louque, a 1st year English major, was disappointed it didn’t pass because it’s consumers right to know.
“I don’t understand why people would not want to know or have the option to know if the food they are eating is genetically modified,” Louque said.
Election results are not yet finalized, as canvassing the results will not be completed until later this month. All information collected on the propositions discussed above was obtained from the Official Voter Information Guide: http://ballotnews.org/2012/11/09/2012-ballot-measure-election-results-california/.
All Statewide results for the state ballot measures was obtained from http://vote.sos.ca.gov/returns/ballot-measures/ and http://ballotnews.org/2012/11/09/2012-ballot-measure-election-results-california/.