Marijuana Trend Spreads as More States Weigh Votes
function share_this(num) {
 tit=encodeURIComponent('Marijuana Trend Spreads as More States Weigh Votes');
 site = new Array(5);
 return false;

Marijuana Trend Spreads as More States Weigh Votes
Posted by CN Staff on October 08, 2013 at 08:38:33 PT
By Alison Vekshin 
USA -- Voter support for legal marijuana in Washington and Colorado is spurring similar campaigns in California and three other states that together may bring pot within lawful reach of almost 1-in-5 Americans. Advocates are seeking the signatures of registered voters in California, Arizona, Oregon and Alaska, with a combined population of 49 million, to put the question on ballots in 2014. Colorado and Washington last year legalized marijuana for 12.1 million people. “Because of Colorado and Washington, it’s created a cannabis tidal wave across the country,” Mike Jolson, 45, a legalization activist in Santa Cruz, California, said by telephone. “We want to capitalize on this wave.”
Washington and Colorado became the first U.S. states to legalize recreational marijuana through referendums last November, defying federal law that has prohibited pot since the 1930s. In August, the U.S. Justice Department said it wouldn’t challenge the states, opening the door for others. In Washington state, regulators are finalizing rules for growing, processing and selling marijuana ahead of a Dec. 1 deadline to begin issuing licenses. In Colorado, which has finished setting its rules, voters will decide next month whether to tax retail sales at rates of as much as 25 percent. “Their success in Colorado was very inspiring, and I thought it would be a good time for us to try here,” said Dennis Bohlke, a computer programmer from Phoenix who said he modeled the Arizona initiative after the Colorado measure. He has to collect 259,213 valid signatures by July 3 to add his measure to the November 2014 ballot. California Support In California, more than half of residents support legalizing marijuana, according to a poll by the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California in San Francisco -- 52 percent of all adults. Counting only likely voters, the figure is 60 percent. The telephone survey of 1,703 residents was conducted Sept. 10-17 and had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.7 percentage points for all residents, and 4 percentage points for registered voters. Because California is the largest state by population, the campaign for legalization needs 504,760 signatures by Feb. 24 to qualify. Jolson said he wants to get volunteers out in the street to collect signatures. In Alaska, one of the least-populated states, just 30,169 signatures are needed before the legislature goes into session in January, Timothy Hinterberger, 57, a sponsor of the initiative, said by telephone. More than 20,000 have been collected so far, he said. If successful, the question would be added to the primary election ballot in August. Changing Opinion Public opinion is shifting toward decriminalizing marijuana use, Hinterberger said. “With the passage of time, people who are now regular voters have a lot more experience with cannabis and people who are cannabis users,” Hinterberger said. A majority, or 52 percent, of Americans favor legalizing marijuana use, compared with 45 percent who say it should remain illegal, according to a survey by the Pew Research Center released in April. Young people are the most supportive, the survey showed. Deputy U.S. Attorney General James Cole said in an August memo to prosecutors that the federal government wouldn’t intervene in the formation of a regulatory structure to oversee recreational marijuana in Colorado and Washington, so long as they prevented out-of-state distribution, access to minors, drugged driving and revenue from going to gangs and cartels. A Justice Department spokeswoman, Allison Price, didn’t respond to an e-mail seeking comment on the ballot proposals. ‘Accelerate Change’ The Justice Department’s decision “certainly does accelerate change in public opinion and makes us more optimistic about our chances in 2014,” said Dan Riffle, federal policy director at the Marijuana Policy Project, a Washington-based advocacy group. “It makes us more optimistic that the federal government won’t be interfering with these laws when we pass them.” In addition to recreational use, there are efforts to expand the 20 states that allow medical marijuana, Riffle said. Ballot proposals to legalize medical marijuana use are being circulated in six states: Arkansas, Florida, Idaho, Nebraska, Utah and Wyoming, according to Allen St. Pierre, executive director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, a Washington-based group that advocates legalization. Two pot measures are being circulated for signatures in Oregon, where a referendum to legalize recreational pot use failed last year, 53 percent to 47 percent. Cannabis Commission One measure to legalize marijuana use requires 116,284 signatures to qualify for the November 2014 ballot, while a second setting up an Oregon Cannabis Commission to regulate its growth and sale requires 87,213 signatures, according to the state. Paul Stanford, 53, of the Hemp & Cannabis Foundation, says he has until July 7 and has collected about 15,000 signatures for each measure. “We’d like to see Oregon’s economy take advantage of this new market, which would be an economic boon,” Stanford said by telephone. Marijuana legalization could generate about $8.7 billion annually in tax revenue for federal, state and local governments, according to a 2010 report by Jeffrey Miron, who teaches economics at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Municipal governments are also weighing in. In Portland, Maine, voters next month will consider a measure to allow possession of up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana for adults who are at least 21. Presidential Power Some marijuana proponents are holding off until the 2016 presidential election, when voter turnout is typically higher. Chris Lindsey, an attorney from Missoula, Montana, and a legislative analyst at the Marijuana Policy Project, said he’s working toward adding a recreational-marijuana proposal to his state’s ballot in 2016. “Elections that involve presidential races tend to bring out a younger set of voters and we think we’ll probably benefit from having younger voters,” Lindsey said by phone. Source: (USA)Author: Alison VekshinPublished: October 8, 2013Copyright: 2013 Bloomberg L.P.Contact: avekshin Website: -- Cannabis Archives 
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help 

Comment #6 posted by FoM on October 08, 2013 at 17:29:58 PT
Thank you for the update. It doesn't surprise me though. 
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #5 posted by The GCW on October 08, 2013 at 15:53:58 PT
Ask at local pipe shops etc. Call Your local NORML, etc. Some news stories may have info... Sign up to be one of the people helping to get petitions signed.California can do it. If Texas can do it... God luck to You.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #4 posted by konagold on October 08, 2013 at 14:47:28 PT:
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #3 posted by Ryannn29 on October 08, 2013 at 14:45:55 PT:
Where can I find sign the petitions for CA legaliz
Where can I find sign the petitions for CA legalization?I've seen so many posts on legalization, but in all my web searching, I can't find where to sign anything to help get it on the ballot.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #2 posted by HempWorld on October 08, 2013 at 10:13:31 PT
The Time Has Come To Legalize Marijuana All Over
 The World, God Bless!Back By Popular Vote! Thank you God/Yahweh/Elohim!The American public has spoken: It's not about whether marijuana is good or bad for you, or how the majority or minority sees it. It's about whether prohibition of something, say alcohol or marijuana, or other, is good policy. And that, we can now say, is a horrible racial divide and a societal devastation. See alcohol prohibition from the 20's. But that one, at least, was not as damaging to minorities then, but it certainly was for society as a whole.Further study has made it clear to me that the prohibition of marijuana is a eugenic policy instrument. It is no coincidence that prohibition on this substance started after 1911, in-synch with the rise of the Eugenics movement. The nature of the drug-war was racist right from the start and by design. It has worked un-abated, as career-hungry jackals surrounding a herd of meek subjects, continuing to cull the American population and to keep people of color down and out, for over a 100 years now: "The superior species the eugenics movement sought was populated not merely by tall, strong, talented people. Eugenicists craved blond, blue-eyed Nordic types. This group alone, they believed, was fit to inherit the Earth. In the process, the movement intended to subtract emancipated Negroes, immigrant Asian laborers, Indians, Hispanics, East Europeans, Jews, dark- haired hill folk, poor people, the infirm and anyone classified outside the gentrified genetic lines drawn up by American raceologists." From: Eugenics and the Nazis -- the California connection" To say that marijuana has been given a bad rap over the past few decades, is an understatement. If you’re like most Americans, you have been led to believe that marijuana is a dangerous and addictive drug that has destroyed the lives of millions of teens and adults. You have been encouraged to believe that marijuana causes lung cancer and is a “gateway” to harder drugs. The government has even tried to convince you that most people who use marijuana are losers who sit around on couches all day doing nothing. (these are all lies, by the way)Frequently it is something responsible adults choose to do specifically instead of alcohol. And for good reason! Marijuana is, statistically speaking, safer then water! Alcohol is toxic, addictive, harmful to the body, it is more likely to result in injuries, more likely to lead to interpersonal violence than marijuana and alcohol kills, marijuana does not. Let me state this differently; marijuana is not toxic! Marijuana actually has benefits and medicinal properties, it even fights cancer! It is simply something that some responsible adults choose to do because it is better for them without being a nuisance to others. Why would this be a bad thing?Thus, the time has come that we need to regulate/legalize to make it less available to our kids (just like cigarettes and alcohol). And we certainly do not want our kids to grow up, starting as little marijuana dealers, as is the case under the current laws, and this is something that has been going on in US society for decades...In the end, when marijuana is available at your local liquor store, it will be off the streets and into a regulated sales system with checks and balances. Marijuana will lose its appeal and its use will decrease, as it did wherever else it was decriminalized and regulated in the world. (The Netherlands, Portugal, Colorado and Washington states)
Down With Racism!
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #1 posted by HempWorld on October 08, 2013 at 10:07:27 PT
That's now the number nation-wide.I would say Cali is at about 62% to 65%But who the hell am I?I am still, soooo happy everyday that we, collectively, nationwide and worldwide are putting this behind us, forever. There's no going back to idiocy or Eugenic read racist laws!
Weed World!
[ Post Comment ]

Post Comment