Source: Just Foreign Policy
Urbana Voters Call on Congress to Explicitly Prohibit US Attack
URBANA, ILLINOIS - February 6 - By a four-to-one margin, voters in Urbana, Illinois approved on Tuesday a referendum calling on Congress to act to prevent war with Iran. The vote was 5,681, or 81%, in favor, with 1,364, or 19%, opposed.
The text of the referendum was: "Shall the voters call upon their elected representatives in Congress to pursue all available means to prevent war with Iran, including passing legislation that would explicitly prohibit the President from attacking Iran without Congressional authorization?"
According to the Cities for Progress project, Urbana is the first U.S. community to consider such a question by referendum. The city councils of Berkeley, Santa Cruz, Oakland, and Portland have passed resolutions opposing a U.S. attack on Iran.
The lopsided margin suggests that such a referendum would pass in other communities.
There was a high correlation across precincts between the percentage of voters supporting the referendum and the percentage of voters pulling Democratic ballots, with the margin of victory of the referendum being higher. 78% of Urbana voters pulling Democratic or Republican ballots pulled a Democratic ballot.
Roughly 69% of voters statewide pulled a Democratic ballot. Illinois has essentially open primaries, and the Presidential contest on the Democratic side drew more interest. In November 2004, Kerry received 55% of the vote in Illinois.
Thus, it is reasonable to suppose that if such a referendum had been held across Illinois, it would have passed with about 75% of the vote.
The Urbana referendum against war with Iran passed with an even greater margin than two other referenda critical of Bush Administration policies: calling for the repeal of the Military Commissions Act and the restoration of habeas corpus (79% in favor) and to eliminate funding for the Iraq war (69% in favor.)
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