If you’re planning to vote on Tuesday, you will find several proposals on the back of the ballot. These are called “Ballot Proposals,” and all three have fought a long fight to get on to the ballot for this Tuesday. Here’s a quick run-down before you go to the polls:
Proposal 1: Legalizing Recreational Marijuana
Marijuana has been a hotly debated topic, and this proposal intends to settle it. Proposal would have the law treat marijuana in a similar way alcohol is.
Anyone over 21 years old would be legally allowed to purchase 2.5 ounces a day and keep 10 ounces at home. This also means anyone over 21 is now allowed to grow up to 21 pants for personal use. The sale of marijuana would be subject to a 6% state tax and an additional 10% tax.
Opponents of the proposal claim that marijuana is a gateway drug, and the legalization of it would lead to more people driving under the influence of marijuana. Proponents of the proposal say that the criminalization of marijuana is ineffective and the lockup of those using are particularly harmful to people of color (who are 3x more likely to be arrested than white people, despite similar usage rates).
Proposal 2: DeGerrymandering Michigan
As it is right now, whichever political party controls the state legislature gets to decide how the congressional boundaries are drawn across the state. This often leads to the outcome of gerrymandered districts: districts drawn in a way that gives one party an unfair advantage.
This can even mean one party winning more seats even if they don’t get the majority of the vote. If Proposal 2 passes, these responsibilities would instead be undertaken by an independent redistricting commission composed of citizens. Four of these citizens would be republicans, four would be democrats, and five would be independent voters.
Opponents of the proposal claim that this would mean the people in charge of drawing district lines would be people who have very little knowledge or experience of how to do it. Proponents say that Michigan is one of the most gerrymandered states in the entire country, and that politicians should not be able to choose who gets to vote for them.
Proposal 3: Make Voting Easier
This proposal takes several steps to ensure that voting is vastly easier than it is now. The measures included in this proposal include: automatically registering people to vote when they get their driver’s license, ending the registration deadline (allowing you to even register on election day), providing absentee ballots to soldiers overseas, allowing you to vote straight-ticket (automatically voting for all the candidates of the party you choose), and no longer requiring you to give a reason in order to obtain an absentee ballot.
Opponents of this proposal claim that it will increase the amount of vote fraud. Proponents believe that all of these measures eliminate common roadblocks that prevent people (especially young people) from voting, and that this will increase the amount of people who are able to get to the polls.