SALT LAKE CITY — In addition to various federal, state and local political races, Utahns voted on four separate initiatives in Tuesday’s election.
- Question 1, which would provide additional public education and local roads funding with an increased gas tax of 10 cents per gallon.
- Proposition 2, which would authorize the establishment of private facilities to grow, process, test and sell medical cannabis with the state to regulate those facilities, as well a state-controlled process for Utahns to buy it.
- Proposition 3, which would expand the Medicaid health coverage program across the state through a sales tax increase of 0.15 percent.
- Proposition 4, which would create a non-political commission to create new voting boundaries throughout the state.
The Associated Press projected that both Proposition 2 and 3 would pass after new results trickled in Friday afternoon. It's still too close to call Proposition 4, which had 50.3 percent of voters' support heading into the weekend.
Those new numbers came after Utah Lt. Governor’s Office announced on Wednesday another 281,000 ballots still needed to be counted. Thousands of ballot results have been counted in since, although most haven't changed the results of key state races and there are thousands more to count.
The results released so far show how counties differed on the initiatives. It also shows how much weight larger-populated counties have on these initiatives.
This initiative has been the lone subject all 29 counties have apparently agreed on. As of Friday, the majority of ballots cast in each county were to nix Question 1. Summit County, at 45.6 percent, was the largest supporter of it, while Piute County, at 18.8 percent, was the lowest.
The medical marijuana initiative that led to a special legislative session compromise from proponents and opponents in October has garnered its largest support in Salt Lake County. Forty-seven of the votes in favor of Proposition 2 have come from the state’s largest county, after Friday's numbers were tallied.
However, the initiative has more than 50 percent support of votes counted in Carbon, Daggett, Grand, Summit, Tooele and Weber counties. Summit County, at a little more than 75 percent to lead all counties, and Grand County are the only counties with more than two-thirds of votes counted in favor of it.
Millard County, at 68.7 percent, had the highest percentage of voters who voted against the initiative, as of Friday. In all, about a half-dozen counties recorded more than 60 percent of votes against Proposition 2. The largest of those was Utah County, where 68,905 votes were against it, which is 67 percent of the total votes currently counted.
The Medicaid expansion initiative has had the strongest overall support of the three propositions Utahns voted for in 2018. It has been most popular in Grand and Summit counties, where both counties had about 65 percent vote in favor, as of Friday. However, it had the smallest gap of those for or against of the initiatives.
It had the least amount of support in Duchesne and Morgan counties, where currently about 63 percent of voters in each county had voted against the initiative, of ballots counted thus far.
Known as the anti-gerrymandering initiative, Proposition 4 continues to be the closest contest among the initiatives this November. That’s mainly because Salt Lake County has 190,326 votes in favor of it, which accounts for more than one-fifth of all votes currently counted in the state.
It also has at least 60 percent of voters in favor of it in Grand and Summit counties and more than 50 percent in Carbon County. However, Daggett, Davis, Wasatch and Weber counties are all hovering close to 50 percent in each county.
Uintah County, at 68 percent, had the largest percentage of those against the initiative.