Propositions don’t have “D” or “R” labels next to them on the ballot. But in a polarized California, liberal and conservative parts of the state favored very different measures.
Prop. 1, which enshrined the right to an abortion in the California constitution, was the most popular measure statewide, winning two-thirds of the vote. But that support was mostly concentrated on the Democratic coasts, where it received a higher share of the vote in those counties than any other measure on the ballot.
That may provide some evidence that the measure worked as intended: Democratic lawmakers put it on the ballot, at least in part, to turn out Democrats and other liberal-leaning voters. Indeed, the places where Prop. 1 fared the best were, almost county-by-county, the same places where Gov. Gavin Newsom, who campaigned for it, most handily beat his Republican opponent, GOP Sen. Brian Dahle, who opposed the measure. (In statistics-speak, the shares of each county’s vote that went to Newsom and to Prop. 1 have a nearly perfect positive correlation).
In more moderate to conservative parts of the state, the two ballot measures that won the most support were Prop. 28, which directs more state funding to arts education, and Prop. 31, which upholds a statewide ban on flavored tobacco.