$758.23 million raised in statewide ballot measures so far

Welcome to the October 4, 2022, Brew. 

By: Joel Williams

Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:

  1. A state ballot measure campaign finance update
  2. A preview of potential public-sector union SCOTUS cases
  3. Iowa’s Chuck Grassley—the nation’s 2nd-longest active-tenured U.S. Senator—running for re-election

$758.23 million raised in statewide ballot measures so far

This year, 137 state ballot measures were certified for the ballot, including 129 for Nov. 8. As of Oct. 1, Ballotpedia identified $758.23 million in contributions to support or oppose this year’s ballot measures. During the 2020 election cycle, $1.27 billion was raised to support or oppose 129 state ballot measures.

  • Of the contributions for this year’s ballot measures, 81.55% were in California, 4.78% were in Massachusetts, and 3.20% were in Colorado. 
  • In 2020, the top three states were California (61.58%), Illinois (9.96%), and Massachusetts (4.97%).
  • In 2018, the top three states were California (31.12%), Nevada (10.76%), and Florida (10.63%).

The chart below compares total contributions between 2018, 2020, and 2022, along with the amount associated with campaigns in California:

Supporters and opponents of California Proposition 27, which would legalize online sports betting, have raised a combined $383.82 million. Supporters and opponents of Massachusetts Question 1, which would impose an additional 4% tax on incomes of more than $1 million, have raised a combined $28.46 million. 

Campaigns supporting or opposing the following five ballot measures have received the most contributions:

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SCOTUS has seven petitions to review public-sector union cases

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) kicked off its October 2022 term. Sign up for our Robe & Gavel newsletter to keep up with what’s going on. Here’s an excerpt from a story we ran on Friday in our Union Station newsletter about public-sector union cases SCOTUS is currently considering.

As of Sept. 29, appellants had filed seven petitions for writs of certiorari—requests for SCOTUS to review a lower court’s ruling—in public-sector union cases we’re tracking. SCOTUS began considering petitions for this term on Wednesday, Sept. 28. Here’s a map identifying those seven petitions and where they originated:

SCOTUS receives 7,000 to 8,000 petitions every year. For a petition to be granted, at least four of the nine justices must vote to hear the case. Between 2007 and 2021, the court issued opinions in an average of 75 cases per year.

Since SCOTUS’ 2018 ruling in Janus v. AFSCME, Ballotpedia has tracked close to 200 public-sector union lawsuits in federal and state courts, 60 of which have been appealed to SCOTUS since the 2018-2019 term. So far, the court has not heard any of these subsequent appeals, although, in 2018, it sent one case back to the Eighth Circuit to be reconsidered in light of Janus. (The court denied a second appeal in the same case in 2020.)

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Iowa’s Chuck Grassley—the nation’s 2nd-longest active-tenured U.S. Senator—running for re-election

We are 35 days away from the Nov. 8 general elections—and 26 days into our 50 States in 50 Days series. Today we’re featuring Iowa, the Hawkeye State.

Week One: Pennsylvania, Indiana, South Dakota, Nebraska, North Dakota
Week Two: California, Georgia, Texas, Montana
Week Three: North Carolina, Virginia, New Mexico, Illinois, Idaho
Week Four: Kentucky, Michigan, Arkansas, Minnesota, West Virginia
Week Five: Vermont, Nevada, Wyoming, Arizona, Ohio
Week Six: South Carolina

On the ballot in Iowa

At the federal level, Iowa voters will elect one U.S. Senator and all four of the state’s U.S. Representatives. Iowa voters will elect the state’s governor and lieutenant governor on a joint ticket. Five other state executive offices—attorney general, secretary of state, treasurer, auditor, and agriculture commissioner—are also up for election.

Thirty-four of the state Senate’s 50 seats are up for election in 2022. This includes all 25 odd-numbered districts and nine specific, even-numbered districts. Voters will elect state Senators in five even-numbered districts because redistricting resulted in either two incumbents or no incumbents living within the district’s new boundaries. Four other even-numbered districts are up for election this year because the incumbent living within that district’s boundaries was last elected in 2018. Any state Senators elected in even-numbered districts this year will serve a two-year term and be up for regular election in 2024. All 100 seats in the Iowa House of Representatives are up for election in 2022.

Two of the seven justices on the Iowa Supreme Court and two of nine justices on the Iowa Court of Appeals are running in retention elections. All four judges were originally appointed to their respective courts by Gov. Kim Reynolds (R).

There are no open U.S. House races and 46 open-seat races in the Legislature this year. 

Redistricting highlights

Iowa was apportioned four seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, which was the same as it had after the 2010 census.

Congressional and state legislative elections will take place under new district lines following the census. Our side-by-side map comparison tool allows you to immediately see what redistricting looks like in your state. Here are the congressional maps in effect before and after the 2020 redistricting cycle in Iowa:

To use our tool to view Iowa’s state legislative maps in effect before and after the 2020 redistricting cycle, visit our Iowa redistricting page

Partisan balance

  • Both of Iowa’s two U.S. Senators—Joni Ernst and Chuck Grassley—are Republicans.
  • Three of the four members of the U.S. House from Iowa are Republicans.
  • Republicans have a 32-18 majority in the state Senate and a 60-40 majority in the state House. Because the governor is a Republican, Iowa is one of 23 states with a Republican trifecta. It has held this status since 2017.
  • Iowa’s governor and secretary of state are Republican, and its attorney general is a Democrat, meaning that it is one of nine states where neither party holds triplex control. All three offices are up for election in 2022.

Seats contested by only one major party

In 2022, 72 state legislative seats in Iowa, or 54% of all seats up for election, do not have major party competition. When a candidate from only one of either the Democratic or Republican parties runs for a state legislative seat, that party is all but guaranteed to win the seat.

Democrats are running in 70% of all state legislative races. Forty state legislative seats (30% of all state legislative seats) do not feature a Democratic candidate, and Republicans are likely to win them.

Republicans are running in 76% of all state legislative races. Thirty-two seats (24% of all state legislative seats) do not feature a Republican candidate, and Democrats are likely to win them.

Key races

  • United States Senate election in Iowa, 2022: U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R) and Michael Franken (D) are running. Grassley was first elected in 1980. In 2020, U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst (R) defeated Theresa Greenfield (D), 52% to 45%, for Iowa’s other U.S. Senate seat. Grassley has the second-longest tenure of any current U.S. Senator.
  • Iowa’s 1st Congressional District election, 2022: Incumbent Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R) and Christina Bohannan (D) are running. Miller-Meeks was first elected to the U.S. House in 2020 in the state’s 2nd District by six votes out of 394,000 cast over Rita Hart (D). That was the narrowest margin of victory in a U.S. House race since 1984. Daily Kos calculated that voters in the redrawn 1st District supported President Trump over President Biden in the 2020 presidential election, 50.5% to 47.6%. 
  • Iowa’s 3rd Congressional District election, 2022: Incumbent Cindy Axne (D) and Zach Nunn (R) are running. The Gazette‘s Liz Mathews said the race was “likely Iowa’s most competitive House election.” Although modified in redistricting, this is one of 13 U.S. House districts Democrats are defending that Donald Trump (R) won in 2020.

Ballot measures

Iowa voters will decide one statewide ballot measure on Nov. 8.  

The Iowa Right to Keep and Bear Arms Amendment would add a right to own and bear firearms to the Iowa Constitution and require strict scrutiny for any alleged violations of the right brought before a court. As of 2021, 44 other states had provisions guaranteeing a right to firearms in their constitutions.

In Iowa, a total of 16 ballot measures appeared on statewide ballots between 1985 and 2020. Nine ballot measures were approved, and seven ballot measures were defeated.


  • Polls are open on Election Day from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. local time.
  • All Iowa voters must present identification when voting. Accepted forms of ID include Iowa driver’s licenses, Iowa non-operator IDs, U.S. passports, and Iowa voter ID cards. Iowa automatically mails free voter ID cards to registered voters without valid Iowa Department of Transportation-issued IDs. If unable to provide an accepted form of ID, voters may instead have another registered voter attest to their identity or provide election day registration documents that prove their identity and residence. For more information about voting ID requirements in Iowa, click here.
  • Iowa allows early in-person voting at each county auditor’s office starting on Oct. 19 and ending on Nov. 7. All voters are eligible to vote absentee in Iowa. 
  • Voter registration can be done online, in person, or by mail by Oct. 24. Registration is permitted on Election Day with proof of identification. For more information or to register to vote in Iowa, click here.
  • All voters may request an absentee ballot from their county auditor’s office. The deadline for requesting an absentee ballot by mail is Oct. 24. Voters must use the return envelope provided, and ballots must be received by 8 p.m. on Election Day to be counted. Absentee ballots can be mailed or delivered in person to a voter’s county auditor’s office. To check the status of your ballot, click here.)

Want to learn more about the elections you’ll be voting in this year? Click here to use our Sample Ballot Lookup tool! 

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