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Oregon governors have also seen some of their endorsements go down to defeat. But these instances of gubernatorial intervention (and sometimes that of state party chairmen) offer no definitive proof that the practice has an inverse or dysfunctional result.

If there is to be a correlation between party and/or a candidate's vote and electoral outcome on issues, the voters must know of such endorsement and associate the issues accordingly. Washington parties take stands on few propositions. In Evans' case above, moreover, there were prominent Republican legislative leaders who publicly opposed the Governor's tax plan and this may have had a neutralizing effect.

The most relevant propositions for correlating party labels with ballot issues are probably welfare, taxes, and government reform. Referenda dealing with morals and recreation are less likely to have significant partisan overtones. However, open housing in California involved some partisanship. We need exploration of the kinds of propositions where political party is or might be an independent variable.


Future studies of ballot behavior might be also used for additional empirical testing of the concept of psychological involvement. This widely accepted framework for analyzing voting behavior notes the three strongest correlates as interest, sense of political efficacy, and party identification. The first two seem certain to be present in voting on propositions. The third as we have noted is in need of further study.

Differentials in turnout between presidential and midterm years, moreover, likely affect the amplitude of such variables as status, age, and the whole range of demographic categories. Also the voting rates of Democratic and Republican identifiers in different elections are likely to show variation. One might wonder also if the increase in split-ticket voting leads to greater discrimination on propositions where a party position is in visible congruence

with them.

Another area lending itself to comparative study is the relationship between ecological variables such as urbanization and (a) turnout and (b) electoral choice. Earlier we looked at some aspects of this problem in Washington but an analysis of greater scope and using other bases such as precinct and legislative district returns is needed, together with comparable analyses in other states. Again, refenda on structural and institutional reform would seem to offer the best areas to study urban-rural conflict.

Very little has been done on information sources and the impact of the voters pamphlet where used. Indeed the surface has been barely scratched. The same holds true for the relationship between ballot forms and abstention rates. Additional comparative research of initiative-referendum voting behavior is necessary before an explanatory theory tieing together information channels, ballot forms, turnoff rates, and electoral choices can be formulated.

See Wolfinger and Greenstein, op. cit., pp. 760-61.

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Finally, of high interest to the democratic theorist is the extent to which the ballot decisions have been rational. A rational vote from one point of view has meant that the voter perceived his own interest and registered his choice accordingly. Using studies of voter judgments on public expenditures, James Q. Wilson and Edward C. Banfield advanced the idea of “public-regardingness" which sought a broader concept of "the public interest." Here the voter takes account of the welfare of others and does not consider only his own selfinterested ends." Whether a voter is rational, therefore, is a value judgment employed by the user.

To explore the concept of rational voting on statewide issues the concept of self-interest of persons in certain counties to support or oppose a particular measure might be used. Reapportionment and mass transit propositions are examples of such issues. Governmental reform issues also seem useful for looking at urban-rural-small town identification as a cognitive mechanism for making a choice.

"Public-Regardingness as a Value Premise in Voting Behavior," American Political Sci

ence Review, 58 (December 1964), 876-87.

[From the Southwestern Social Science Quarterly, June 1961]

Tendencies of California
Direct Legislation



IN 1911 WHEN THE INITIATIVE AND referendum were finally incorporated

into California law the work of Dr. John R. Haynes and others in behalf of the Californian's right to initiate legislation finally bore fruit1 and years of agitation and effort were rewarded. The amendment providing for the initiative and referendum appears in the State Constitution as Article IV, Section 1, and was adopted on October 10, 1911.

Since its passage the provisions for direct legislation have not been allowed to become atrophied. The passage of each two-year election-period since 1912 has witnessed the appearance of, on the average, twenty-two proposals of one sort or another for consideration by the electorate. The cost of these proposals to the particular interests sponsoring them has been great. The exact amount is difficult to determine because enforcement for the requirement of reporting such expenditures is lacking. However, it is estimated that the average cost runs between $50,000 and $65,000. A maximum amount reported for one election ran over $1,000,000.

While it is difficult to assess with mathematical accuracy the over-all tendency of direct legislation in California, certain definite trends over a period of nearly half a century are clearly discernible. For purposes of convenience the trends will be classified under four headings: political, social, fiscal, and educational. This classification has no ironclad logic. Education is obviously a social issue. Likewise, many aspects of education involve important fiscal considerations. However, education appears frequently enough as a subject

1 Winston W. Crouch, The Initiative and Referendum in California (Los Angeles: The Haynes Foundation, 1950); Winston W. Crouch and V. O. Key, "The Initiative and the Referendum in California," Publications of the University of California at Los Angeles in Social Sciences, VI, (1936–1939), 423–498; California State Chamber of Commerce, Initi ative Legislation in California, San Francisco, 1950. In the Haynes Foundation publication Crouch offers a thorough summary of the progress of the referendum and initiative through 1949.

2 Constitution of the State of California and Summary of Amendments (Sacramento: California State Printing Office, 1925).

for direct legislation to justify considering it as a separate classification, especially in view of current public interest in specifically educational issues. Apparently not all of the California citizenry was satisfied with provisions for the initiative as an improvement in California politics. An attack on the initiative as a political device was not long in coming. In 1920 an attempt was made to limit its use, but this effort failed (298–421).' However, in the following election efforts to weaken the initiative were renewed in a new proposed amendment. This amendment was crushed by more than 100 thousand votes. Interest in changing the initiative through the initiative process died at this point until 1950 when a provision to bar names in initiative measures was passed (1,985–910).

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One important area of politics to come up for consideration by initiative or referendum was the matter of elections. In 1915 a referendum proposal for non-partisan nomination of state officers was crushed (112–156). On the same ballot an effort to remove party symbols suffered a similar fate (106-151). The following year a proposal for an open primary system edged near to success but was nonetheless defeated by a safe margin (319– 349).

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All votes indicated in parentheses are in thousands of votes. The yes vote is always listed first. The data covering elections from 1912 to 1949 was drawn from Crouch, Initiative and Referendum, pp. 42–49. For materials after 1949 the sources consulted were State of California, Statement of Vote, General Election, November 7, 1950, compiled by Frank M. Jordan, Secretary of State, pp. 26-31; ibid., November 6, 1956, pp. 22–29; ibid., November 4, 1958, pp. 26-34; Handbook California Legislature 1953 Regular Session, pp. 423-424; ibid., 1955, pp. 444-445.

• An initiative measure.

A referendum measure.

Perhaps of greater importance to the future of California elections were the crucial reapportionment elections of 1926. Two offerings were made on the same ballot. One proposed reapportionment by population. It went down to defeat (319-492). The federal plan for reapportionment was ac cepted in its stead (437-363). Two years later the federal reapportionment plan was approved for a second time, this time with a margin of more than 100 thousand votes (692–570). The only other important adjustment in the political machinery of California by direct legislation was a 1930 initiative statute to adopt a permanent registration system. It was overwhelmingly approved (609-447).

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In California the field of labor legislation has been a favorite political battlefield. Labor and management have both had their victories. A 1938 proposal to regulate picketing and boycotting was badly beaten in its first appearance (1,067-1,476). However, when the issue appeared again in 1942 as a prohibition on picketing and secondary boycotting, the wartime measure carried (1,124-909). Labor's effort to obtain a declaration for a fair employment policy in 1946 was crushed by a better than two to one margin (675-1,682). On the other hand, in 1958 a management-sponsored right to work law which would have eliminated the union shop suffered a similar fate (2,079–3,070).

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In the California social order the human activity which called forth more direct legislation through the initiative and referendum than any other was the matter of consuming alcoholic beverages. A rather frank initiative

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