World

California, Massachusetts, Nevada vote to legalize recreational marijuana

Donald Trump's win is undeniably the biggest result to come out of the stunning U.S. election, but it's not the only one: Americans in many states also voted on marijuana, gun control and the death penalty.

Ballot measures in some states cover gun control, death penalty, minimum wage and more

Americans voted for their next president, but they also voted for a number of other issues, (Scott Sommerdorf/The Salt Lake Tribune/Associated Press)

Donald Trump's win is undeniably the biggest result to come out of the stunning U.S. election, but it's not the only one — Americans in many states also voted on marijuana, gun control and the death penalty.

 In all, more than 150 measures appeared on statewide ballots in Tuesday's election.Here are some of the other ballot measures that were voted on:

Marijuana legalization

Medical marijuana measures won approval in Florida, North Dakota and Arkansas. (Robert F. Bukaty/Associated Press)

In California, Massachusetts and Nevada voters chose to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, giving a huge boost to the campaign to allow pot nationwide.

Medical marijuana measures won approval in Florida, North Dakota and Arkansas. A recreational pot proposal lost in Arizona. The outcome of another in Maine was too close to call. Recreational marijuana has previously been legalized by voters in four western states — Colorado, Washington, Oregon and Alaska — and the District of Columbia.

Gun control

Voters in California expanded some of the country's toughest gun control measures. (George Frey/Reuters)

Many states also had questions about gun control measures on their ballots.

California voters expanded some of the nation's toughest gun control measures by approving Proposition 63, which bans large-capacity ammunition magazines, requiring background checks for ammunition sales and speeding the seizure of firearms from people who are no longer allowed to own them.

The measure passed 63 per cent to 37 per cent.

The initiative's chief proponent, Lt.-Gov. Gavin Newsom, believed voters would be motivated by memories of the 2015 deadly attack at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, Calif. He said the ammunition restrictions and California's unique firearms seizure program would serve as models for other states.

In Maine and Nevada, a group founded by former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg spent millions promoting ballot measures that would require background checks on nearly all gun sales and transfers. The measure was approved in Nevada but was too close to call in Maine early Wednesday.

Washington state approved a ballot measure that will allow judges to issue orders temporarily seizing guns from individuals who are deemed a threat.

In Nevada, voters were deciding on whether to limit all transfers of gun ownership to licensed gun dealers, with temporary exchanges and transfers between family members exempted. The Yes side was winning, but narrowly.

Death penalty

Nebraska voters chose to reinstate the death penalty. (Pat Sullivan/Associated Press)

In Nebraska, voters reinstated the death penalty, reversing the legislature's decision last year to repeal capital punishment. Nebraska has not executed an inmate since 1997; 10 men currently sit on death row.

California had two competing measures on its ballot: one repealing its rarely used death penalty, replacing it with life in prison, and the other speeding up appeals so convicted murderers are actually executed. The repeal measure was trailing in partial returns.

Oklahoma residents approved a measure to make it harder to abolish capital punishment. It seeks to ensure the state has a way to execute prisoners even if a given method is blocked.

Minimum wage

With Congress unable to agree on an increase in the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour, numerous states and cities have taken action on their own.

In this election, Arizona, Colorado and Maine voters approved measures phasing in a $12 minimum hourly wages by 2020. In Washington state, where the minimum wage is $9.47 an hour, voters approved a measure raising that to $13.50 an hour by 2020.

South Dakota lowered the minimum wage for individuals under age 18 to $7.50 per hour from $8.55 per hour

Assisted dying, health care

Colorado voters approved a measure that will allow physicians to assist a terminally ill person in dying. That's already a practice in five other states. Coloradans defeated a proposal that would have set up the nation's first universal health care system.

Bilingual education

California voters repealed a nearly two-decade-old law that limited bilingual education in public schools.

Tax hikes

Oregon voters defeated a measure that would have imposed a 2.5 per cent tax on corporate sales that exceed $25 million. Washington voters rejected a plan to promote cleaner energy by imposing a tax of $25 per metric ton on carbon emissions from fossil fuels such as gasoline, coal and natural gas.

Tobacco taxes

Voters in Colorado, Missouri and North Dakota rejected proposals to raise taxes on cigarettes and other tobacco products. Californians approved a measure that raises cigarette prices by $2 a pack and places new taxes on electronic cigarettes.

With files from Reuters and The Associated Press

now