The 2014 Massachusetts Ballot Questions Explained in Plain English

As is the case with most things Massachusetts, the wording of ballot questions can get pretty complicated and confusing.

Voting ‘yes’ on a ballot question means voting to change an existing law. But that only makes things clear if you already knew and understood the current law. Sometimes, voting ‘yes’ means getting rid of a law, so it feels a lot like voting ‘no.’


And just when you’ve done your homework and think you get it, you find yourself at a polling place, amidst a sea of signs screaming ‘yes’ and ‘no,’ and…oh god, were you planning ‘yes’ on Questions 1-3 and ‘no’ on 4, or was it ‘no’ on 1 and ‘yes’ on the other three?

There are four questions on this year’s ballot, each of them answered with what seems like simple ‘yes’ or ‘no.’ We’ve broken it down so you’ll know what your vote on each question actually means. And be sure to print out your ballot question cheat sheet found at the end of this article.


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