Voters pass abortion, arts education, anti-tobacco propositions

California and Santa Barbara County voters both said “yes” to abortion protections, arts education funding, and a flavored tobacco ban, but soured on the remaining statewide propositions, according to Nov. 8 election results.

With 98 percent of the statewide vote counted as of press time, the seven proposition contests are all but decided. Of the group, Proposition 1 received the most support, with two-thirds of voters (or more than 7 million residents) voting in favor of enshrining reproductive rights into the state Constitution.

click to enlarge Voters pass abortion, arts education, anti-tobacco propositions
RESULTS ARE IN : Out of the seven state propositions on the Nov. 8 ballot, voters approved three—paving the way for stronger abortion protections, dedicated arts and music education funding, and a ban on flavored tobacco.

Proposition 27, on the other hand, saw the most emphatic opposition: 82 percent of voters rejected the measure that would’ve legalized online gambling outside of tribal territories.

Most native groups—including the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians—opposed the measure. The official No on 27, Californians for Tribal Sovereignty and Safe Gaming group celebrated its defeat in a statement.

“California tribes are thankful that voters have defeated Prop. 27 and affirmed the mutually beneficial relationship enjoyed by tribes with the state of California,” the statement read. “The sovereign right of tribes to exclusively operate casino-style gaming in California, as originally confirmed by the state’s voters over two decades ago, has been preserved from the incursion of out-of-state corporations.”

State voters also rejected Proposition 26, another gambling measure, by a less emphatic but still hefty two-thirds majority. If passed, it would have legalized “on-site sports betting, racetrack operations, roulette tables, and dice games on federally recognized tribal lands,” according to previous Sun reporting.

Propositions 28 and 31 both passed easily. Proposition 28 will establish the state’s first dedicated funding stream for arts and music education in K-12 schools—requiring about $1 billion per year. Proposition 31 upholds the state’s flavored tobacco ban, which lawmakers passed in 2020. Both received about 64 percent voter support.

The third time was not the charm for dialysis reform: More than two-thirds of voters rejected Proposition 29, the third attempt by dialysis union workers to put a proposal before state voters in as many elections.

Voters also said “no” to Proposition 30, a proposed tax on millionaires, which would’ve funded rebates for electric cars and charging infrastructure, as well as wildfire prevention efforts. That contest turned out to be the tightest of the seven, but 58 percent of voters still rejected it.

The proposition results in Santa Barbara County closely mirrored those of the state, with local voters choosing to support and reject the same slate of measures. In San Luis Obispo County, that same trend held, although voter support was weaker there for the three propositions that passed than it was statewide.

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