Six States To Decide Tomorrow On Marijuana Measures

Millions of voters will decide on Election Day in favor of ballot measures to legalize and regulate the use of cannabis by adults. Voters in three states — Colorado, Oregon, and Washington — will decide on statewide ballot measures to legalize the possession and distribution of cannabis for those over 21 years of age. Voters in three additional states — Arkansas, Massachusetts, and Montana — will decide on measures to allow for the therapeutic use of cannabis by patients with qualifying ailments. In Michigan, voters in four cities – totaling over a million people – will decide on municipal measures to legalize or depenalize the adult use of cannabis.

Ballot measures in Colorado, Massachusetts, and Washington remain favored among voters, according to the latest statewide polls.

Since 1996, 17 states have enacted legislation to allow for the limited possession of cannabis when a physician authorizes such use. In ten of those states, voters enacted medical cannabis legislation via the statewide initiative process. But to date, no statewide proposal to remove criminal and civil penalties for the broader, personal possession and use of marijuana by adults has succeeded at the ballot box. This reality is likely to change tomorrow.

A summary of this year’s more prominent statewide and local ballot measures appears below.

ARKANSAS: Voters will decide on Measure 5, The Arkansas Medical Marijuana Act of 2012, which allows authorized patients to possess up to two and one-half ounces of cannabis for various qualifying medical conditions, including cancer, Crohn’s disease, fibromyalgia, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The measure also allows state regulators to establish not-for-profit facilities to produce and dispense cannabis to approved patients. Individual patients will also be permitted to privately cultivate limited amounts of cannabis (up to six flowering plants) if they reside further than five miles from a state-authorized dispensary.

COLORADO: Voters will decide on Amendment 64, which allows for the legal possession of up to one ounce of marijuana and/or the cultivation of up to six cannabis plants by those persons age 21 and over. Longer-term, the measure seeks to establish regulations governing the commercial production and distribution of marijuana by licensed retailers. Voters in the state approve of the measure by a margin of 50 percent to 44 percent, according to the latest Denver Post survey.

MASSACHUSETTS: Voters will decide on Question 3, which eliminates statewide criminal and civil penalties related to the possession and use of up to a 60-day supply of cannabis by qualified patients. It would also require the state to create and regulate up to 35 facilities to produce and dispense cannabis to approved patients. Individual patients will also be permitted to privately cultivate limited amounts of cannabis if they are unable to access a state-authorized dispensary. Voters in the state approve the measure by a margin of 55 percent to 36 percent, according to the latest Suffolk University poll.

MICHIGAN: Voters in four cities – totaling over a million people – will also decide on Tuesday whether to legalize or depenalize the adult use of cannabis. Voters in Detroit will decide on Proposal M, which removes criminal penalties pertaining to the possession on private property of up to one ounce of marijuana by adults over age 21. In Flint, voters will decide on a citizens’ initiative to amend the city code so that the possession on private property of up to one ounce of marijuana or cannabis paraphernalia by those age 19 or older is no longer a criminal offense. Grand Rapids voters will act on Proposal 2, which seeks to allow local law enforcement the discretion to ticket first-time marijuana offenders with a civil citation, punishable by a $25 fine and no criminal record. In Ypsilanti, voters will decide on a proposal to make the local enforcement of marijuana possession offenses the city’s lowest law enforcement priority.

MONTANA: Voters will decide on Initiative Referendum 124. A ‘no’ vote on IR-124 would repeal newly enacted restrictions to the state’s 2004 voter-approved medical marijuana law.

OREGON: Voters will decide on Measure 80, the Oregon Cannabis Tax Act, which provides for the state-licensed production and retail sale of cannabis to adults. The measure does not impose state-licensing or taxation requirements upon those who wish to cultivate cannabis for non-commercial purposes.

WASHINGTON: Voters will decide on I-502, which regulates the production and sale of limited amounts of marijuana for adults. The measure also removes criminal penalties specific to the adult possession of up to one ounce of cannabis for personal use. Voters in the state back the measure by a margin of 56 percent to 37 percent, according to the latest KING 5 poll.

36 thoughts

  1. is there a site we can go to dedicated to real-time results of only this issue in these states? basically i wanna know the second it happens in CO and WA so i can spark up a fatty in celebration for those two states. they will have their freedom while i’m a criminal, but i still want to know!

    anyone know where to find out or where to go to watch?

    [Paul Armentano responds: The NORML blog will be live on Election Night and will be posting the results of these measures as soon as they are official.]

  2. Anyone know what is going on here in Florida, about Medical Marijuana ? I read all different things and have NOT A CLUE what’s going on?
    I need to know when it will be legal for Chronic Pain people (veterans 100% Disabled Service Connected and I’m SICK OF NARCOTICS, I’m off them and NEED a way to protect myself from the NARCOTIC PUSHING DOCTORS…
    Please fill me in?
    Thank you,
    Semper Fi! Ray

  3. My dad can’t afford his card. He’s on SSDI after working his body to depravity. Hard just to cover the basics ya know. Helicopters found his 2 plants. Afraid he won’t be eligible to even apply for card now. Also probation expense and No medicine of course. Fines, etc. Minor from many who are locked up I know. God help Emery and the 85 thousand like him. Please help my Dad.

  4. If nothing is happening statewide it may be because the state politicians are scared to lead, but there are other kinds of regional leadership (such as in your neighborhood) which you can do with no fear of getting into trouble, but which will help in the meantime before the state venue is ready for a big legal push. Such as gardening: has it occurred to you to just start preparing some now-treeless land to plant a garden next year, any species– maybe especially hops (Humulus lupulus), a cannabis-near-relative– study gardening websites and see what kinds of project work you can learn how to do in that first year which will make you ready for the next year when it may be time to start planting megaacres of pre-reforestation hemp, skunk and krautriefer.

  5. Oh my goodness I’m so excited I can hardly stand it. I haven’t smoked in weeks just so I can celebrate tomorrow and watch everything unfold before my very eyes on television. This will be a glorious moment I will never forget and I can’t wait to be a part of History in just less than 24 hours! ~Cheers

  6. Please please please vote the right way tomorrow America. The whole world is watching now to see history in the making. Once you have started the ball rolling, we will be unstoppable.

  7. OMG! I want my vote to go for Gary Johnson so bad I can’t stand it. However, I live in VA and have to give my vote to Obama to keep that jerk Romney (gay bashing, anti-choice, anti-freedom, pro-rich…) from winning…

    I took a call from the RNC and actually got a live person at the other end trying to convince me to vote for Romney. At the end of the call, I had him considering voting for Obama after I pointed out all that is wrong with Romney and he didn’t have any good responses!

  8. “… when the people want to do something I can’t find anything in the Constitution expressly forbidding them to do, I say, whether I like it or not, ‘Goddammit, let ’em do it.'” Justice Felix Frankfurter (1882-1965)

  9. I just voted. Instead of Obama I chose Gary Johnson at the last minute. I just couldn’t give it to someone who has not delivered in the 4 years he has had the chance… I seriously hope Romney loses but just can’t support Obama…

  10. Question: What will the Federal government likely do to undermine any state that legalizes pot? The Feds will have to respond, look at how they have treated state legal medical marijuana providers in California. I’m curious what you guys think the Feds will do.

    [Paul Armentano responds: Initially, nothing at all. The regulation and sales measures in Colorado and Washington do not take effect for one-year. However, the lifting of the ban on personal possession takes place immediately. And there is very little the federal government can do to challenge or interfere with a state’s decision to reclassify cannabis as something other than contraband.]

  11. Let this be the day that will go down in history as the beginning of the end of Nixon’s Prohibition and a return to the Constitution, liberty and freedom.

  12. Thank you Miles and thank you to everyone who votes for Gov. Johnson today. Today’s election will be historic and the more people willing to vote FOR Gov. Johnson instead of against MR or BO, the better chance we have for change. 5% of the vote gives the LP ballot access and public funding in 2016 and hopefully with at least one state doing full on legalization it puts the issue of legalization front and center for the next 4 years. We the people have to get off the sidelines and vote. We the people want this. We the people have to participate to have a voice and that includes voting and showing up for jury duty to use nullification to make our voice heard.

  13. I can’t wait til legalization spreads on a federal level. Or at least in the state I live in like Florida and North Carolina. I am really happy that we are going on the right path to finally start legalize an obliviously less harmful drug than alcohol.

  14. The number one cash crop in California is marijuana. In 33 states arijuana is in the top three of highest crop revenues in these states. How much is taxed legally? NONE!!!!! Please vote to make it legal for taxation, this revenue stream is much needed and will lessen the income tax burden on taxpayers. Bad fiscal policy needs to change.

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