Voters in California, Massachusetts and Nevada approved recreational marijuana initiatives Tuesday night, and several other states passed medical marijuana provisions, in what is turning out to be the biggest electoral victory for marijuana reform since 2012, when Colorado and Washington first approved the drug’s recreational use.
People in nine states, including California, Florida and Massachusetts, will vote Nov. 8 on ballot proposals permitting recreational or medical use of marijuana. These initiatives could give a big push to legalization, prompting the next president and Congress to overhaul the country’s failed drug laws.
California, the first state to legalize medical marijuana 20 years ago, will vote in November on whether to legalize recreational use for people over the age of 21. With 39 million residents and the world’s 6th-largest economy, California’s status could resonate throughout the country. NewsHour Weekend Special Correspondent Mike Taibbi reports.
Cloverdale is reconsidering its ban on medical marijuana dispensaries in light of what the city manager describes as a “potential new political dynamic regarding marijuana.”
With predictions that California, like a growing number of states, will approve the recreational use of marijuana next year, Cloverdale City Council members on Wednesday are expected to establish an ad hoc committee to potentially revamp city policies about cannabis.
The march to bring marijuana legalization before California voters in 2016 ramped up Thursday with the announcement by a group of longtime Bay Area cannabis advocates that they have hired heavy-hitting Democratic political strategists and plan to release a draft of the proposed initiative in the coming weeks.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) is facing pressure to back reforms to marijuana laws from advocates in her home state. Feinstein has staked out a position as one of the few congressional Democrats still opposed to many aspects of federal marijuana reform. But marijuana advocates are urging Feinstein to change her stance. They’ll deliver a petition signed by more than 10,000 people to her San Francisco office on Tuesday.
Ferndale officials have delayed a decision on a police request to limit the number of medical marijuana businesses in the city. City Manager April Lynch said the ultimate decision is up to the City Council and city staff members are working on a proposal to bring to the council as early as June 22. The issue was originally scheduled to go before council members Monday.