Voters turned back moves to limit union rights in Ohio and to further restrict abortion rights in Mississippi, both of which were seen as modest Democratic victories a year away from the 2012 general election.
In Ohio, voters by a 61%-to-39% margin rejected a law that had curbed public employees’ collective bargaining rights. The law went even further than a controversial measure in Wisconsin that roiled the state for weeks.
Mississippi voters rejected a GOP-supported “personhood” measure that would have declared a fetus a person from conception, effectively outlawing all abortion.
In Maine, Republicans recently had ended same-day registration at polling places. Voters decided to restore the practice, which Democrats support.
Incumbent mayors Michael Nutter of Philadelphia, Greg Ballard of Indianapolis, Stephanie Rawlings-Blake of Baltimore, and Greg Stanton of Phoenix all won reelection, the New York Times reported. Edwin Lee became the first mayor of Chinese descent in San Francisco.
Taken together, the votes were viewed as a modest sign of a Democratic resurgence from the disastrous 2010 elections, although many analysts said the economy would have to improve if the party is to hold gains next year.