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Backers of California Marijuana Initiative Upbeat About Passage in 2012

4 years ago
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Despite last week's defeat in California of Proposition 19, which would have legalized recreational marijuana, supporters of the ballot initiative are already gearing up to try again in 2012 and are optimistic that it will pass on a second try, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Backers of the measure see this year's campaign as a trial run and say it enabled them to expand their base of support from the original activists, who set this year's campaign in motion, to a broader base that includes big-money donors as well as labor and civil rights leaders.

Those big-money donors are crucial because advocates were able to raise only a fraction of what they had hoped to spend on the campaign this year.

Marijuana legalizationEthan Nadelmann, the executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, a national advocacy group, told the Times: "The question about legalizing marijuana is no longer when, it's no longer whether, it's how."

Voters rejected the proposition by a 54 percent to 46 percent vote. But the Times said a post-election survey by the pollster for the Prop 19 campaign found that while voters rejected this year's specific initiative, Californians favored legalization by 49 percent to 40 percent with 10 percent undecided. The undecideds were considered to be susceptible to arguments for legalization, according to the Times.

A 2012 legalization drive may also benefit from different dynamics than existed in the midterm elections. The measure had union backing because of the potential to create new jobs, but labor organizations were more focused on the statewide campaigns that included contests for governor and Senate.

Voters under 21 favored the measure by 2-to-1, but their turnout numbers were low. Legalization backers hope that getting a measure back on the ballot in 2012 will improve that, since young voters tend to turn out in higher numbers in presidential election years.

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It seems a bit confusing. They say that legalizing liquor was a good thing, now they are saying that alcohol is a bad thing. Now they are saying that legalizing pot is a good thing, but they know that pot is a bad thing. Is it whether it is good or bad or if it is used by the wrong people at the wrong time, as while driving bad. O, right, now we'll have to worry about the nuts that are high on the road as well as the drunks. Well, ----- I guess that is fair.

November 08 2010 at 8:52 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
J.P. Craig

The legalization of marijuana has its drawbacks, but it's inevitable that it will be legal some day. Alcohol, which is legal, causes far more harm than pot does. The time for marijuana to become legal is way past its time. The drug lords in Mexico don't want marijuana to become legal in this country because that means their billions of dollars in revenue is out the window.

November 08 2010 at 6:43 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to J.P. Craig's comment

I completely agree! We cannot stop what is already going to happen, which is the legalization of marijuana. If it will bring California out of going bankrupt, it would be better for the people so they do not have to continue to suffer. Even though it is a drug, there is far worse things out there that are legal, like alcohol. To save our country from worse debt, especially California, it is best to allow legalization of the drug.

November 08 2010 at 8:29 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Based on recent reports that show alcohol is more toxic than other drugs, I think alcohol should be outlawed and marijuana legalized.

November 08 2010 at 4:07 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to catalogsplus's comment
J.P. Craig

The United States tried outlawing alcohol back in the 1920's and early 30's. It didn't work. Bootleggers and organized crime made huge amounts of money, and the American people simply found a way to consume alcohol anyway. It's no different with marijuana now. I'm not a pot smoker but the time has come to legalize it simply because you're not going to stop people from smoking it no matter how much you try and stop people.

November 08 2010 at 6:48 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

You might wish to consult a history book before repeating "the great experiment" that provided the seed money for organized crime in the 1920s.

November 08 2010 at 8:25 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
George & Nancy

I call the legalization of pot the dumbing down of America. A dumbed down people won't be alert as to the wiles of a crafty government.

November 08 2010 at 3:16 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I would not be in favor of legalizing pot that you smoke; just ingest. The cigarette smokers have caused enough of our health care problems. Also, anyone caught driving under the influence should pay a heavy fine.

November 08 2010 at 2:07 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

Just what we need, a legal endorsement of pot. That is going to encourage our children to use it.

November 08 2010 at 2:00 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
dc walker

How many rehabs are there in California?? Robert Downey, Jr, Lindsay Lohan, Charlie Sheen, etc. It costs the people of California to incarcerate young people who get hooked. It starts with Cigarettes, escalates to MJ, meth, crack, heroin. What they should have is a main DEA office downtown LA and Malibu with K9s walking the streets. It is far more easier to bring down a country when everyone is stoned than fighting any war. If you need a high so bad move to MX, Sweden, etc.

November 08 2010 at 12:17 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to dc walker's comment

I think you're getting the bigger picture, it does cost a lot to incarcerate an individual for MJ. That money goes somewhere...

November 08 2010 at 12:45 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

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