It hasn’t happened in more than 30 years, but Arizona Public Radio’s Howard Fischer reports it looks like there won’t be any voter-proposed laws on the November ballot.
Jared Keen, coordinator of a proposal to require labeling of foods with genetically modified ingredients admitted his organization will not be able to get the more than 172,000 signatures needed by Thursday’s 5 p.m. deadline.
“We came to it late. We got no national support. Even the GMO organizations inside the state just did not do their job,” he said.
Other petition drives also apparently have been abandoned, like limiting city budgets, legalizing same-sex marriage and barring the state from converting existing highway to toll roads. There have been voter-proposed measures on every ballot since 1980. Some were populist measures like a state minimum wage, which passed. And some were not, like an unsuccessful bid by payday lenders to keep their doors open. Pollster Earl de Berge said he can only speculate on why there were none this year.
“I don’t know the reason for it unless the people that are putting up the big bucks for those kind of petition drives and then the campaigns that follow have become discouraged by the failure of a lot of those items at the ballot box,” he said.
Voters will get to decide two measures proposed by the Legislature, one challenging federal authority and the other giving terminally ill patients access to unapproved drugs. And there’s also a proposal to hike legislative pay by $11,000 a year.