Michigan

Michigan voters approved both statewide proposals by about a 10
percent margin. Proposal 1 allows voters to approve the
introduction of any casinos or lottery games, and Proposal 2 amends
the state Constitution to define marriage or a similar union as
between a man and a woman.

In the races for Michigan’s 15 congressional positions,
Republicans maintained a lead of nine seats to the Democrats’
six. All the elections were decided in favor of the incumbents
except for the 7th District seat, which was vacated by Republican
Nick Smith due to term limits and filled by the Republican Joe
Schwartz.

No U.S. Senate seats were in contention this year.

 

California

Stem cell research initiative

Voters in California voted 59 to 41 percent to pass a public
initiative allocating $3 billion to fund stem cell research in the
state. Backed by Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Proposition
71 marks the start of the largest state-funded scientific research
program in the United States. The proposition bypasses restrictions
placed on stem-cell research by President Bush and should place
California at the forefront of the still-developing field.

 

South Dakota

U.S. Senate

Republican challenger John Thune thinly defeated Democratic
Senate leader Tom Daschle in South Dakota yesterday. Daschle earned
the scorn of many Republicans as he was denounced as an
“obstructionist” that tried to stall bills on many
domestic issues.

Republicans tried hard to unseat Daschle, even sending Senate
Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) to South Dakota to campaign
against Daschle — breaking a tradition that held the other
party’s Senate leader does not campaign against his
counterpart. When Congress meets again Democrats will have to pick
a new leader for their future as the minority party.

 

Illinois

U.S. Senate

Democratic state Sen. Barack Obama, a political star in the
making, triumphed easily in the Illinois contest, and will be the
only black among 100 senators when the new Congress convenes in
January.

Obama, 43, had no difficulty dispatching Alan Keyes, a black
conservative whose outspoken views against abortion and
homosexuality earned disdain from some members of his own party.
The Democratic state legislator’s victory in a race to
replace Republican Sen. Peter Fitzgerald capped a remarkable rise.
He first gained national prominence this summer when his
party’s presidential candidate, Sen. John Kerry, tapped him
to deliver the keynote address at the Democratic National
Convention.

 

Colorado

Electoral vote proposal

Voters in Colorado defeated a ballot initiative which would have
allocated the state’s nine electoral votes proportionally.
The measure would have applied to could have split the electoral
votes based on how much of the popular vote they won. Colorado,
along with 47 other states, grants all of its electoral votes to
the presidential candidate who wins the popular vote.

 

Texas

U.S. House

Republicans defeated three veteran Texas Democrats as they
glided toward extending their decade-long control of the U.S. House
of Representatives.

Months after Texas’s dominant state Republicans redrew
congressional district lines to the GOP’s advantage, the
fiercely disputed plan bore fruit and fueled the party’s
hopes of holding its House majority. Among its chief architects
were House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas), who was easily
re-elected.

Texas Democratic Reps. Charles Stenholm, a leading fiscal
conservative and power on the Agriculture Committee, and Martin
Frost, a one-time member of his party’s leadership, were both
defeated, along with Rep. Max Sandlin. Along with a fourth Texas
Democrat who was also trailing, the group had a total of 68 years
of House experience.

 

Louisiana

Polling problems

In New Orleans, problems with electronic machines, some of which
did not boot up, forced precinct workers to tell voters they would
have to come back, voting activists said.

“New Orleans wins the award for the worst voting situation
in the country when it comes from electronic voting
machines,” said Cindy Cohn, legal director of the Electronic
Frontier Foundation.

 

North Carolina

U.S Senate

In North Carolina, Republican candidate Richard Burr captured an
open Senate seat in a tight race against Democratic candidate
Erskine Bowles, who also lost to Elizabeth Dole in the 2002 Senate
election in the state. This year’s election was complicated
by broken voting machines in Charlotte, but ended in five-term U.S.
Rep. Burr winning with 52 percent of the vote.

 

Ohio

Gay marriage proposal

The proposal to ban gay marriage in Ohio passed decisively
yesterday. Sixty-two percent voted to ban gay marriage compared to
38 percent who voted against the ban.

Of the 11 states that voted yesterday on proposals to ban gay
marriage, Ohio’s measure is considered the most sweeping. In
addition to stating that “only a union between one man and
one woman” will be considered a marriage, the Ohio proposal
also includes a provision to deny legal status to a relationship
“that intends to approximate” a marriage.

 

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Compiled from The Associated Press

Graphics by Ashley Dinges

Page design by Alison Go

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