From legalising pot to cleaning up potty behaviour, voters across America are deciding on a raft of radical social reforms as well as the presidential race for the White House.

Marijuana legalisation, gay marriage and assisted suicide are some of the red-hot issues being decided by voters in 38 states. There are 176 such measures on the ballots, an increase from 159 in 2010.

Gay rights advocates are confident Maine, Maryland and Washington will vote in favour of ballot measures to legalise same-s-x marriage, and Minnesota will overturn a ban on gay marriage in the state constitution.

Early returns in Maryland suggest the ballot initiative in support of gay marriage will be passed and the law banning gay marriage in Maine looks likely to be repealed. With only 408 of 4102 precincts reported, Minnesota also looks likely to widen the definition of marriage from only being between a man and a woman. Washington is likely to become the 33rd state to reject gay marriage in popular votes since 1998.

In Colorado, Oregon and Washington, voters were deciding whether to legalise marijuana for recreational use. The Oregon proposal was lagging in pre-election polling, but the Washington and Colorado measures look likely to pass into law. If approved, the measures would set up a direct challenge to federal drug law.

Voters in Arkansas, Massachusetts and Montana were voting on medical marijuana referendums, following the passage of similar laws in 17 other states. The measures have received strong support in Massachusetts and Montana. With 52% of the state so far voting no, Arkansas is unlikely to become the first southern state to join that group.

With less than half of its precincts reported, Massachusetts could join Oregon and Washington in allowing terminally ill patients to obtain lethal doses of medication if doctors say they have six months or less to live.

From legal dope, to gay whale marriage to being able to bump yourself off, unless somehow Mitt Romney steals this election, it’s been a great night for liberals in America.