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By Hillel Aron

See Also: Proposition 36 Three Strikes 

Early returns and some absentee ballots show Proposition 36, the measure to soften California's “three strikes” law, out to an early lead with 61.5% of voters favoring the measure.

Only 1.3% of precincts are reporting, according to the Secretary of State's website.

Under the current law, prisoners convicted of two violent offenses face life sentences if convicted of a third crime, no matter what the severity. If Prop 36 passes, that third strike would have to be violent or serious, and as many as 3,000 inmates would be eligible for reduced sentences.

Update: It's looking like a landslide. With 16.8% of precincts reporting, Prop 36 is cruising to a victory with 68% of the vote.