Maine voters overwhelmingly approved Question 2 on Tuesday, a ballot measure that prohibits direct and indirect electioneering from foreign governments and foreign government-owned entities in candidate and ballot measure elections.
With 45% of precincts reporting in, 86% of voters said 'Yes' to Question 2.
Federal prohibitions on foreign spending in elections already applied to candidate races. However, there is a loophole on the subject of ballot referendums, and in the past few years over $100 million in federal spending went into ballot measure elections in Maine.
“In this cycle, 83% of the spending has been by foreign government-owned entities," said Kaitlin LaCasse of Protect Maine Elections in a previous interview for IVN. Protect Maine Elections spearheaded the effort to pass Question 2.
Maine is the 8th state to ban foreign nationals from making contributions to ballot measure campaigns. The other 7 are California, Colorado, Maryland, Nevada, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Washington.