Democratic Party Decides Not To Endorse Marijuana 
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Democratic Party Decides Not To Endorse Marijuana 
Posted by CN Staff on July 19, 2010 at 05:23:17 PT
By John Hoeffel, Los Angeles Times
Source: Los Angeles Times
Reporting from San Jose -- The state Democratic Party decided Sunday not to endorse the marijuana legalization initiative on the November ballot after a swift, passionate debate that left little doubt most Democrats in the hotel meeting room intend to vote yes at the polls.The party decided to adopt a neutral position on Proposition 19, leaving the many local Democratic committees and organizations free to endorse the measure.
Advocates for an endorsement cited many reasons to back the initiative, but opponents pressed one overriding concern: a yes vote could damage statewide candidates in competitive races."We're concerned that our candidates, Jerry Brown, Barbara Boxer and others, who have actually come out against this are going to be compromised," said Steve Preminger, the chairman of the Santa Clara County Democratic Central Committee, "so we're going to get lost in a discussion about the merits of whether we should legalize or not, when, really, we the Democratic Party want to put all of our efforts into electing our ticket."Robert Cruickshank, public policy director for the Courage Campaign, which backs progressive causes, called for the vote in an attempt to overturn a party committee's recommendation to adopt a neutral position. He started by reminding the assembled Democrats that the party's chairman, former San Francisco state Sen. John Burton, has said pot was the issue that would motivate young voters to go to the polls in this off-year election."If we endorse Proposition 19 and take a courageous position to support reform, just as we took courageous positions on same-sex marriage and other contentious issues, we will win the moral argument, we will win Proposition 19 and we will win races in November," Cruickshank said.Proposition 19 would allow Californians 21 and older to grow, possess and transport marijuana, and allow cities and counties to opt to regulate and tax marijuana sales.Burton said he believes the issue will engage young voters, a key constituency for Democrats. He abstained on the vote but said he was not convinced that an endorsement would hurt Brown's campaign for governor, Boxer's bid for reelection to the U.S. Senate or the other Democrats running for top state offices. "The statewide candidates, I guess, are all antsy," he said.He said he would vote for the initiative, adding: "And I haven't had a joint in 30 years."The party's executive board, which includes elected officials and party representatives from across the state, voted 101 to 85 against an endorsement. But the Democrats, despite taking a cautious stance, appeared solidly behind the initiative, cheering and whooping much more raucously for the pro-endorsement speakers.Dan Rush, an official with Local 5 of the United Food and Commercial Workers, who is running the legalization campaign's labor outreach, said an endorsement would have been a "great boost" but that a neutral position was still a victory. "We could have gotten a resounding no," he said.Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)Author:   John Hoeffel, Los Angeles TimesPublished: July 18, 2010 Copyright: 2010 Los Angeles TimesContact: letters latimes.comWebsite: -- Cannabis Archives 
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Comment #14 posted by Sinsemilla Jones on July 19, 2010 at 23:02:14 PT
Lead, follow, or get out of the way.
Given that both major parties have been in the way for so long, getting out of the way is probably the best we can hope for from either of them.They'll follow once we're there.
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Comment #13 posted by Hope on July 19, 2010 at 20:51:09 PT
And yes...
Neutral is better than opposing it. 
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Comment #12 posted by FoM on July 19, 2010 at 19:10:14 PT
I believe that neutral is better then No! No! No! Seriously, I have always had lowered expectations of any politician. All I want is to allow ordinary people to make changes and don't stop us every step along the way.
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Comment #11 posted by Shielde on July 19, 2010 at 19:04:05 PT
I personally am not a supporter of any certain party I choose based on the person. The title is slightly misleading, to most they would see it saying "Democratic Party Decides To Oppose Marijuana", even though they choose to stay neutral
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Comment #10 posted by MikeEEEEE on July 19, 2010 at 18:05:03 PT
Demo-rats & Republicon-jobs
Perhaps some of you expect too much from the phony two party corporate system.
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on July 19, 2010 at 14:40:29 PT
One thing I like about how the Democrats seem to work these days is they let the people decide and then they will stand with the people's choice. 
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Comment #8 posted by Vincent on July 19, 2010 at 14:21:53 PT:
You have a valid point there. The Republicans DO twist everything. However, some backbone on the part of Democratic candidates like Jerry Brown would be very refreshing!
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Comment #7 posted by Sam Adams on July 19, 2010 at 12:18:46 PT
reasons are BS
never believe what you read in the paper! it's what they want you to believe.what we're seeing here is just another demonstration of the Dem. party fealty to the law enforcement unions. Legal marijuana means dramatic reduction of govt. police power. Both the Dems and Repubs hate that idea.
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Comment #6 posted by keydet46 on July 19, 2010 at 11:49:46 PT:
This is the problem with politicians, their first concerns is election, then comes reelection. They seem to forget their reason for getting into politics in the first place, to make a difference. You have the republicans not taking the interest of their constituants but more worried about their jobs and to hell with the people so they just say "no" to everything.
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Comment #5 posted by Hope on July 19, 2010 at 11:15:08 PT
This article
Not surprising.Would have been nice to see a bit of courage about doing the right thing... but not surprising that it didn't happen.
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Comment #4 posted by Hope on July 19, 2010 at 11:11:54 PT
Comment 3 
Wow!That's no rumor. No urban legend or myth.It's really happening. For real.Finally.That's amazing good news.
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on July 19, 2010 at 07:17:12 PT
Article From NPR Blog
From Acapulco Gold To Albino Rhino: The Marijuana Trademark Land RushJuly 19, 2010URL:
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on July 19, 2010 at 07:12:03 PT
I have watched the Republicans twist everything they can to win. I think they are smart not to endorse it. 
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Comment #1 posted by Vincent on July 19, 2010 at 06:26:16 PT:
The Democrats
The Democrats refused to endorse the Marijuana what else is new? I don't know why the Democrats are such jellyfish on this issue. Why? They should realize that Conservatives will never vote for them, so why bend over backwards to please these fiends?
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