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No Marijuana Legalization in California This Year

Submitted by Phillip Smith on
Drug War Issues
Politics & Advocacy

California's Proposition 19, the tax and regulate marijuana legalization initiative, has been defeated. A little over two hours after the polls closed at 8 pm Pacific Time, the measure is trailing 44% to 56% with 25% of the votes counted, but even the campaign is conceding the loss.

As the polls closed, Oaksterdam waited
"We appreciate the tremendous victory in pushing this issue forward," said Dale Jones, Yes on 19 spokesperson. "We've taken this further than ever before. It's just a matter of taking the next step forward," she told the crowd inside Oaksterdam University, with the video also being projected onto the university's great wall for a crowd of hundreds outside. "We made this happen. This the debate heard 'round the world," she said.

"We are going to keep fighting," Richard Lee said. "We made big breakthroughs with this campaign, with all the allies we've gotten on board," before thanking those arrayed on the stage behind him, including Dan Rush of the UFCW, LEAP, the Drug Policy Alliance's Steve Gutwillig and Ethan Nadelmann, East Bay activist couple Chris Conrad and Mikki Norris, NORML's Allen St. Pierre, a pair of phone bank volunteers, campaign figures Jeff and Dale Jones, and even his mom and dad.

"We have a coalition moving forward, you have not seen the last of the group that brought you Prop 19," Jones said.

"We are going to stay here and keep building," said Rush. "We are going to continue this fight together and across the nation. Next time we're going to take Colorado and Michigan. We're going to keep riding this train.

"This is a watershed moment in a very long struggle to end the decades-long failure of marijuana prohibition in this country," said DPA's Steve Gutwillig. "Tonight was an enormous step in placing this movement in the mainstream of American politics. That's what happened tonight."

Gutwillig vowed that two to five legalization initiatives will be on the ballot in 2012. "Marijuana prohibition is going down," he said.

Maybe in 2012.

Permission to Reprint: This content is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Content of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.


Anonymous3 (not verified)

If you are relying on people under 30 to come out in droves, you're campaign is toast.  They don't vote in the numbers that older age brackets do.  The messaging needs to target mainstream parents of teens, which means you need mainstream people like them representing your campaign.  They need to relate to the people running the campaign.  Of course you need to have a sit down moment with the editorial boards of all the major newspapers before you launch the campaign, or else they will get everything upside down as they did.

Somebody take it from here....

Wed, 11/03/2010 - 4:55am Permalink
old vet (not verified)

looks to me like the criminal element has won the despicable profiteers in human misery .greed and ignorance has prevailed again..head lines should read hate wins

Wed, 11/03/2010 - 8:20am Permalink
kj (not verified)

Congratulations, California.  The prison industrial complex, street gangs, drug dealers and drug cartels thank you  for granting them at least two more years of resounding profits. Your number one crop, cannabis will still be number one but, at least, still unregulated and in the hands of criminals.   Just keep the guns coming!

Wed, 11/03/2010 - 12:13pm Permalink
Badboy7357 (not verified)

Will there be another chance at it or was this it?

With the changes in the House, I think the chance has been lost. The loss of Prop 19 may push the cause back decades before another good chance come up again. I hope it doesn't set back the medical attempts.

Wed, 11/03/2010 - 12:41pm Permalink
KIng Pothead (not verified)

In reply to by Badboy7357 (not verified)

This is just a minor setback.  The drumbeat for legalization is becoming louder and more prominent throughout the country and other parts of the world.  The war on drugs is viewed as a colossal failure.  People are tired of seeing friends/family incarated and lives ruined over simple possession.  The lies against the weed have all been debunked.  Research seems to find more medical benefits of m.j. monthly.  It seems like it slows, stops or prevents the growth of any type of cancer (hell, we should all take a vaporized dose daily for health maintanence).  People now realize it's a safer choice than alcohol.  Most importantly, this economy will remain in the shitter for the foreseeable future.  As the nutless left and evil, obstructionist right in Washington get nothing resolved over the next decade, the states will take it upon themselves to legalize and tax as a form of revenue.  It's just a matter of time.  The dike that is marijuana prohibition is crumbling and that finger just won't hold back the water anymore.

Sat, 11/06/2010 - 12:18am Permalink

My suggestions, going forward:

 1. Change the language: Refer to all recreational puffing as "recreational cannabis use" and eventually (think years) the word "cannabis" alone will imply "medical cannabis." After all, isn't all cannabis medicinal, regardless of whether I think I'm treating a medical condition or not? "Recreational cannabis" is a much more meaningful phrase because I can choose to take cannabis purposefully for enjoyment. All cannabis is "medical cannabis," so calling it "medical cannabis" is redundant and adds no word value.

2. Make sure everyone in your family and social circle knows cannabis cures cancer. Share articles from on your Facebook page. Plug every chance you get. Just don't rant or rave like a conspiracy theorist. Focus on the "good news." If you're worried about prospective employers reading your page, make a publicly-searchable "professional" page, and another separate page, with tight privacy settings ("searchable only by Friends") so you can broadcast cannabis awareness. When recruiters and employers search for your name on FB, all that shows up is your squeaky-clean professional page. Hope that helps.


Wed, 11/03/2010 - 2:39pm Permalink
maxwood (not verified)

In reply to by Patrick Sullivan (not verified)

I have second thoughts about the weasel word jargon phrase "recreational use"-- what positive achievements does it promote?  Remember, the "wreck-creational" drug #1 is alcohol.  Isn't it about time those who understand how to use cannabis for creativity and discovery speak up?  Even enjoyment is educational, too.

Thu, 11/04/2010 - 4:25pm Permalink
Callum (not verified)

So no matter what studies show that cannabis is good for you people in the older generation still remain ignorant. I give up on people, some people are just too dumb

Wed, 11/03/2010 - 3:16pm Permalink
Anonymous-zeta (not verified)

thank you from all of us,thank you for making sure this didnt pass now,i can continue to supply you guys with my buds down south of the boarder,thank you for not messing with my money.


Wed, 11/03/2010 - 6:58pm Permalink
wtpatton (not verified)

Prop 19 and medical marijuana measures in other states were a victim of bad timing as far as what the election year trends were this year. The Republican redneck vote was inspired to come out to vote against Obama and legalization fell victim to their ignorance. At least we now have an actual U.S. Senator who is in favor of legalization, Rand Paul, even if he has to downplay his views for a little while.

Anyone who thinks that drug use will automatically destroy one's future, remind them that our last three Presidents, Clinton, Bush and Obama, all likely used marijuana and cocaine in the past (only President Obama has courageously admitted drug use directly in his autobiography).

Would President Obama's path to success have been diverted should he have been unfortunate enough to be convicted of a drug offense back when he had been a casual user? It is not fair that millions of other United States citizens are being denied their right to succeed due to drug laws, which are unconstitutional. 

Fri, 11/05/2010 - 10:09am Permalink

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