Maine: Marijuana Regulation Initiative Cleared For November Ballot

vote_keyboardIt’s finally official. Maine voters will decide on Election Day on a statewide ballot measure seeking to regulate the adult use, retail sale, and commercial production of cannabis.

The Secretary of State determined today that initiative proponents, The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, gathered a sufficient number of signatures from registered voters to qualify the measure for the November ballot. The office had previously attempted to invalidate a significant portion of proponents’ signatures, but that effort was rejected by the courts earlier this month.

If enacted by voters in November, the measure would allow adults to legally possess up to two and one-half ounces of marijuana and to cultivate marijuana (up to six mature plants and the entire yields of said plants) for their own personal use. The measure would also establish licensing for the commercial production and retail sale of cannabis. Retail sales of cannabis would be subject to a ten percent sales tax. Non-commercial transactions and/or retail sales involving medical cannabis would not be subject to taxation. You can read the full text of the proposed initiative here.

Maine is one of a number of states — including Arizona, California, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Nevada — where voters are expected to decide this fall on legalizing the adult use of cannabis. According to statewide survey data provided by the Maine People’s Resource Center, nearly 54 percent of likely Maine voters would approve the initiative if the election were held today. Only 42 percent of respondents said they would oppose it.

18 thoughts

  1. It’s not the fallin down but the gettin back up that measures the true character of a person… or marijuana advocacy group. Nice recovery MPP. Watch out for crooked notaries.
    Congratulations Maine; Democracy works in your court systems!

  2. Actually, the word “Legalization” is not in the wording of the bill. It is “regulate” which is much different.

    [Editor’s note: There is no regulating cannabis without legalization, conversely, there is no legalization without regulation.]

  3. Most likely Missouri will also get on the ballot. Signature gathering has reached 235,000 of a needed 160,000 with 11 days to go. One can only hope.

  4. The danger of the present initiatives is they perpetuate the erroneous idea that gaining some form of revocable and limited permission from government to own your body is somehow a victory or “freedom” It isn’t.

    It also advances the dangerous assumption that “permission” from government is the same as freedom, it isn’t.

    If somebody gives you “permission” and sets limits on what you can grow, ingest and trade in, you cannot by definition “own yourself”.
    In that instance SOMEBODY ELSE owns you and you are simply hoping for a kinder master.

    Good luck with that.

    1. Thanks Bob, but most of us are thankful for small mercies. I applaud your principled libertarianism, but it still is a huge blessing that fewer people will be jailed and persecuted if the law passes. Ultimately NO ONE is without restriction, and freedom is defined as knowing and living the truth. Being able to do completely as we please is not freedom, it is lasciviousness.

  5. This is great news! Perseverance has paid off. It’s also proof that the machinations of the prohibitionists can be defeated.

    It’d be great to see legalization finally spread to the far N.E. part of the country. Come on Mainers I’m rooting for ya!

  6. I really do not like the fact that the issuance of canopy for growing will be capped at 800,000 sq ft. divided out it looks like 100 growers. small number. maine has thousands of cannabis growers. why not let more people participate? why is just this part so restrictive?

  7. @Evening Bud

    The machinations of the prohibitionists aren’t being defeated. What’s happening is prohibition has been replaced with a revocable privilege.

    The idea that somebody else can STILL tell you how much you can grow, possess or trade in makes it very clear, that other people believe you don’t own yourself.

    Please don’t confuse a kinder master who “allows” you a little bit of weed, with real freedom. They are two different things.

    1. The goal here is pragmatic. It’s a given that you will receive at least as much shit as you are willing to take, and no less. If you are willing to defy an absolute prohibition in order to smoke weed, then you’re also willing to defy a revokable privilege in order to smoke weed. The difference is, it’s better this way. Less people go to jail. Less people get killed, or otherwise have their lives ruined. Less damage. Harm reduction!

      If we were to wait until our enemies choose to lay down their arms and bow before our superior arguments and reasoning, we’re going to be waiting until hell freezes over! I don’t know about you, but I’ve had my fill of that shit!

  8. @ Bob Constantine,

    Sorry, but I had to laugh at your comments.

    I can’t help but believe you won’t feel “free” until you never have to pay a tax of any sort again. That you won’t feel “free” until every regulation has been lifted from society.

    Bob Constantine’s libertarian world: dirt roads, no traffic signs, no public parks or libraries or wildlife parks, no police (sounds great, especially for the local gang bangers), no troublesome fire fighters, and food and water that has to be inspected before consumption for bacteria or botulism, that is, after you pay that private company for you water.

    Just think, Bob, in your government-free world, you can smoke your unlimited and unregulated pot while inspecting your food for salmonella. And you can toke away (and hopefully won’t cough up non-regulated pesticides in your pot) while boiling your drinking water. Ahh, to be young and a libertarian. Free to make as much money as you want, free to become rich, with no government intrusion.

  9. @Evening Bud

    I don’t believe in the use of offensive force and believe all of the services you mentioned could be provided using voluntary and peaceful means in the absence of a central coercion based authority.

    Peaceful means are better than forcible means, no?

    Also, I’m a grandfather.

    I think you own yourself, pity that you don’t. Peace.

  10. @ Bob Constantine,

    Listen, Bob, my apologies for coming on strong. You of course have a right to an opinion like anyone else.

    I tend to get frustrated with posters who never, in my opinion, seem satisfied with progress we’ve had on the legalization front these past few years. I believe that we’re actually seeing it happen, “it” being the legalization of MJ. And I am ecstatic about that. I wish to hell I lived in one of those states that has already legalized.

    But I really do understand what you’ve been saying about govt. And I can give plenty of examples of tyrannical and abusive behavior by govts throughout history and now, as I know you can.

    But I don’t believe private companies, in and of themselves, are necessarily more virtuous. I believe they can be every bit as tyrannical and abusive. I know that it could be argued that we have the choice of whether or not to purchase their services, but I believe that’s far too simplistic of an answer.

    Anyway, if you want to continue this conversation, I’ll be happy to.

    Peace to you, brother.

  11. @Bob, et al Libertarians,
    We agree that the government should not be prohibiting our individual freedom to consume marijuana correct?
    So why let the perfect be the enemy of the good? A no vote on regulation that reduces mass incarceration is a vote for prohibition, you must know this?
    We need to get focused on what we agree on because here in Texas I am surrounded by fellow marijuana legalizers who are libertarian yet contradict their ideology every time they pass and support legislation that includes regulations of any kind, including every day public services like the ones mentioned by evening bud.
    Personaly, I believe cannabis should be fairly taxed and regulated/legalized with revenue spent on public education in order to prevent prohibition from ever happening again. Fact: Colorado and Washington would never have succeeded in legalization without taxation of marijuana. Fact: Prohibition IS a lack of fair government regulation where black market cartels are in collusion with executive agencies that have no business writing drug legislation. Real people work for the government. Freedom requires that we all participate in the fair representation of our government. Anything less is an oligarchy of private special interests.
    Do you believe that private for-profit organizations in a capitalist consumer economy, (such as GlaxoSmithKline, GEO and private prison services, many of whome already pay zero taxes through loopholes and tax havens) would benevolently keep our best interests in mind without government regulation? Where would millions of kids who can’t afford a private education go? Without a government, who would stop Mosantos from patenting the marijuana plant, human kind, and life as we know it?

  12. @Evening Bud

    Thank you for your apology.

    The only person that should determine what and how much you ingest or possess should be you.

    The only persons that should decide, on a peaceful and mutual basis, whether or not you will engage in free trade are the involved parties, not an uninvolved third party.

    When that happens the weed will be freed.

    None of us can delegate rights we don’t possess. None of us, individually or an aggregate of individuals calling themselves “leaders” should attempt to delegate rights they don’t possess.

    Only YOU, should own your body. Laws which delegate your right to self determine are fundamentally flawed as they replace self determination with an external body using offensive force threats as a primary means.

    In other words, your right to self determine, has been breached. What follows CANNOT, logically be freedom, rather at best it is a granted privilege. The argument I just presented is unassailable, since it’s demonstrably true.

    Is it better to gain better treatment (more privileges and a lower prohibition intrusion) for cannabis users than the present draconian prohibition model is a different question than has “the weed” been freed?

    As an abolitionist, my goals don’t end at better treatment for slaves, it is to abolish slavery.

  13. @ Julian

    Personally I believe I have no right to determine or delegate your rights of self ownership and reciprocably you have no right to determine or delegate mine. None of us do.

    I’m not interested in running your life, and pretty determined others won’t run mine. That is the underpinning of my belief. Your beliefs seems to waver from that philosophy as you believe you or at least some people have the right to delegate rights which you don’t possess.

    Further since you and I as individuals have no right to delegate rights we don’t have, we cannot somehow form an aggregate of our “zero right” with lots of other people and create something from the sum of our “zero rights”.

    A sum of our individual zeroes is still zero.

    You seem unable to remove yourself from the false dichotomy that because a thing exists in one mode which has coercion as the means, it somehow couldn’t exist if it was derived from voluntary means and peaceful interactions (without coercion as the primary means) rather than edicts backed by threats of force.

    I can’t have a core philosophy which is based in respecting other persons freedoms of self determination and then ignore it for convenience.

    Voting for increased privileges rather than exercising and respecting self determination are two different things.

    I could answer every one of your questions too, but this is not the place for that. Peace.

  14. @ Julian,

    The questions you posed are presented in a way that attempts to use a framework of a false dichotomy to confine my answers to outcomes you’ve chosen as if they are foregone conclusions.

    The error is, the outcomes you’ve chosen don’t include all the possible outcomes, IF the means shifts from a coercion based model to a voluntary and peaceful means, it is not a foregone conclusion that your fears will be realized.

    Something you might ponder…can (should) a person delegate a right they do not possess and then point to the end result while ignoring the means they use to achieve it?

    Peace.

  15. Whatever bob….people will be able to sit around a fire and share a smoke with friends without worry, while you are wringing your hands saying we are still not free… smoke a joint and chill

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