The two proposed amendments to the state constitution went down in defeat inTuesday’s statewide referendum. The vote to require a 60-percent vote of thelegislature to raise some taxes failed by a 52 to 48-percent margin. Theamendment to put spending limits on the legislature failed by a 51 to49-percent margin. The ‘Vote No’ coalition included the League of WomenVoters, Iowa’s Catholic and Methodist churches, the Iowa P-T-A, the AmericanAssociation of Retired Persons as well as the state teachers’ union. Coalition spokesman Brad Hudson says the amendment calling for spendinglimits was too confusing. Hudson says three weeks ago, he wouldn’t havepredicted yesterday’s outcome.Opinion polls had shown widespread support for the constitutionalrestrictions. Amendment backers say they underestimated the opposition. Iowans for Tax Relief President David Stanley accused the opposition ofbeing “completely uninhibited.”Stanley promises another effort to put taxing and spending limits in thestate constitution — he’s pushing something called the “Taxpayer RightsAmendment”.Turn-out in yesterday’s election was slightly above the predicted 20percent. Secretary of State Chet Culver — the state commissioner ofelections — says turn-out in urban counties was higher than he hadexpected. Culver says he’s pleasantly surprised.Amendment supporters had predicted turnout of 350-thousand. Just over400-thousand ballots were cast.
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