State measures: No to ColoradoCare, cigarette taxes, yes to primaries

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DENVER — Colorado voters faced several measures on the ballot on Election Day that finished with mixed results.

Amendment 69 — ColoradoCare fails

Amendment 69, which would have created a universal health system, was trounced at the polls.

With 63 percent of the precincts reporting early Wednesday morning, the amendment that would have created ColoradoCare was defeated with 1,801,634 votes (79.7 percent) against to 459,411 votes (20.3 percent) in favor.

Republicans and Democrats came out strongly against the amendment, which would have eliminated most private health insurance in the state in favor of a taxpayer-funded cooperative.

A 10 percent payroll tax would have funded the massive cooperative. The proposed $36 billion budget would have been larger than the state government’s budget.

Amendment 71 — ‘Raise the Bar’ passes

The so-called “Raise the Bar” amendment to make it harder for citizen initiatives to get on the ballot and to require more than a simple majority to get approval was passed.

With 63 percent of the vote in, the measure was leading with 1,275,420 votes (56.9 percent) in favor and 965,438 (43.1 percent) against. Those against the measure conceded defeat.

Under the amendment, there will need to be signatures from 2 percent of registered voters in each of the state’s 35 Senate districts and the measure would require a 55 percent yes vote to pass an amendment.

Amendment 72 — Cigarette tax increase fails

An amendment to raise cigarette taxes was turned down.

With 63 percent of the vote counted, there were 1,238,483 votes (53.6 percent) against the proposal and 1,071,844 votes (46.4 percent) in favor.

The proposal would have added an additional $1.75 in taxes to a pack of cigarettes.

Propositions 107, 108 — Primary elections get OK

Two propositions to change primary voting in the state were heading to victory.

Proposition 107, which would return presidential primaries, was leading with 1,427,341 (63.4 percent) yes votes to 815,665 (36.4 percent) no votes.

Proposition 108, which would allow unaffiliated voters to no longer have to register to participate in nonpresidential primaries, was leading with 1,162,355 votes (52.33 percent) compared to 1,058,926 (47.67 percent) against.

Amendment T — Slavery reference

A thin margin was leaning toward keeping a reference to slavery in the state constitution.

With 63 percent of the ballots counted, there were 1,106,218 votes (50.7 percent) against with 1,074,168 votes (49.3 percent) in favor.

The 1876 reference reads: “There shall never be in this state either slavery or involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime.”

Amendment U — Property tax exemption

An amendment to get rid of a property tax when the market value of the government property is less than $6,000 was getting soundly beaten.

With 63 percent of the ballots counted, there were 1,210,971 votes (56.9 percent) against the amendment, with 918,897 votes (43.1 percent) in favor.