Marijuana's Victory in Colorado, Washington Means California Will Follow Soon

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Coming to a state near you?
An end to America's experiment with marijuana prohibition is in sight, after voters in Colorado and Washington approved re-legalizing the plant Tuesday. 

In California, where voters said "no" to adult-legal marijuana in 2010, the decisive passages of Amendment 64 in Colorado (54 percent yes to 46 percent no) and I-502 in Washington (55 percent to 45 percent), marijuana advocates watched the out-of-state action with delight. "Happy days are here again," said Ellen Komp, deputy director of California NORML, as she watched the results come in. "This is the win we need."

No legalization measures reached Californian's ballots this year, in large part because potential financial backers chose to put their money elsewhere. These two wins make it "exponentially" more likely big money will return to the Golden State, which means it's a matter of time for legalization here, too, Komp said.

After all, with support for marijuana legalization polling at 50 percent, marijuana is more popular than Mitt Romney.

Golden State denizens took a bite out of the Drug War just the same on Tuesday. Voters in California approved a revision to the state's three-strikes law. Now, a third-felony conviction for marijuana possession, cultivation, or sales won't saddle the offender with the possibility of life in prison. 

In Colorado, Amendment 64 cruised to victory despite opposition from elected officials. Support from the Seattle City Council, the King's County sheriff, and a former United States prosecutor helped push I-504 to victory. 

"The vote puts Washington and Colorado to the left of the Netherlands on marijuana law," the Seattle Times reported. 

Medical marijuana was also on the ballot elsewhere in the country. A medical measure lost in deep Romney-red Arkansas, but by only 4 percentage points. But in Massachusetts, where Romney was hosting his Election Night party in Boston, voters approved the medical use of marijuana by an overwhelming margin, 63 percent to 37 percent, or by 700,000 votes out of 2.7 million cast.

Massachusetts is the 18th state to allow for the medical use of marijuana. California, where the Compassionate Use Act passed in 1996, was the first.

In 2010, opposition from California's medical cannabis providers hampered Prop. 19. But a letter in October from United States Attorney General Eric Holder, in which the nation's top cop warned that the Justice Department would "vigorously enforce" the Controlled Substances Act even if the state legalized marijuana, also had a chilling effect. 

No such warning was issued to voters in Washington and Colorado, despite nine former DEA heads issuing Holder a plea to get involved. 

A legalization measure in Oregon did lose. But Measure 80 had almost no campaign, only $500,000 to put it on the ballot, and no cash left to promote it.

"I'm smelling a mandate, even if we haven't swept," Komp said. "Two states at once? This is a game-changer."
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5 comments
actueel68
actueel68

This is a wonder thing, personally, I don't see how anyone who has 2 brain cells is against legalizing marijuana. Let's put aside the cartel argument I so often hear in California. This plant is a wonder thing that can be a valuable asset to our society, clothing, medicine, revenue, etc. This can be a whole new industry with prosperity to us all. I don't see how one can complain government imposes their agendas and beliefs on us and then we leave the door open for them to control us. The biggest opponent to legalizing marijuana is A Drug Free America, which is funded by alcohol companies. Harry J. Anslinger in 1937 (an owner of a cotton plantation) saw the threat marijuana posed to his business and began conjuring up harmful images for HIS benefit. He ultimately won and Marijuana was banned. In present time, marijuana is a huge game changer if entered into the market, for one, it can't be patented since it is considered a plant. Pharmaceutical, Alcohol, Tobacco, fabric, etc companies are all oppose to marijuana for fear of loss to revenue. 

 

 I just want to know, what's it like to live a life against this plant, knowing full well it's sole reputation in our f***ed up society is based on false information and motives of greed. 

 

I am a user of this medicine, yes I said medicine. I'm currently on a waiting list to have my gallbladder removed, I was given Vicodin to stop the pain.. Well after liver damage, withdraws and money being wasted, I finally got over my phobia of marijuana and used it as my primary medicine. With this, I don't have withdraws, I can finally sleep through the night and I know I'm not funding real harmful drugs that ruin an individuals life. 

shamong005
shamong005

These DEA guys make me sick, I guess it is all about job security for them, who cares if harmless teenagers get thrown in jail and their future ruined.

 

Here is my suggestion: Instead of calling it the "legalization of marihuana", we should refer to it as the "deregulation of hemp". Now let some of the "small government people" explain why they are against deregulation, why they want a gigantic justice and prison system and why they want the government in peoples lives...

happytoker
happytoker

Outstanding! Let's get this measure back in front of voters, this time we win!

canorml420
canorml420

Actually, I said, "Hempy Days Are Here Again." But great story! 

 

We will be discussing next steps at California NORML's "Cannabis in California: Ending the 100 Year War" conference at Ft. Mason Center, San Francisco on January 26 & 27. All are invited! See www.canorml.org

kevin_hunt
kevin_hunt

 @happytoker You have to convince the illegal growers in the Emerald Triangle to vote for it.  They didn't vote for Prop 19.

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