As a state ballot measures staff writer, I don’t just cover citizen initiatives and referendums—I also cover constitutional amendments—because in every state except Delaware, changes a legislature makes to the state constitution must be referred to voters for their approval or rejection. I find it fascinating to see what amendments come out of the different state legislatures and I especially enjoy the cases where I get to chat with an amendment’s sponsor to hear about their motivations for proposing various constitutional changes. Since state legislatures convened their 2019 sessions in the early months of this year, 19 legislatively referred constitutional amendments have passed in state legislatures and landed on 2019 ballots. Legislatures have also referred 29 constitutional amendments to 2020 ballots. Measures can still be added or removed from the ballot, however.
I also really like calculating statistics, such as the following:
- From 2006 through 2018, a total of 914 constitutional amendments were proposed and put before voters.
- Statistically, from 2006 through 2018, off-year election cycles featured a higher approval rate for proposed constitutional amendments than even years. In 2017, all 17 amendments on the ballot were approved, for the highest approval rate since 1947.
I’m excited to see what happens with the constitutional amendments already certified for state ballots as they head to voters for approval or rejection. Remember— for almost anything you want to know about ballot measures… we have a page for that.
Check out the page below detailing what we cover and how to keep track of it all with us.
Have fun at camp!