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Prop. 19 Has Wide U.S. Support

More Americans than not would welcome a vote by Californians to legalize marijuana, a poll released Monday says.
United Press International (DC)

Prop 19 Counting on Broad Coalition, Late Ad Blitz to Prevail [FEATURE]

Los Angeles Times readers woke up Monday morning to find a Proposition 19 ad wrapped around Section A. A day earlier, they were greeted with a full-page ad in the Sunday newspaper. The print ads are part of a last minute advertising campaign that also includes ads on Comedy Central's "The Daily Show" and "Colbert Report," millions of ad impressions on Google and Facebook, and a radio ad campaign highlighting the disproportionate harm that marijuana prohibition causes for communities of color is hitting five Southern California stations, three of them Spanish-language.

two page ad wrapping Sunday's LA Times
The ad campaign is being funded by a $1 million donation last month from financier George Soros and is being run not by Yes on 19, the official Prop 19 campaign committee, but by a political action committee controlled by the Drug Policy Alliance.

The ad campaign is part of a frantic effort to sway voters and get out the vote as the clock ticks down toward Tuesday night. A barrage of recent polls have shown the measure losing, but Yes on 19 said Sunday that victory is still within reach.

The campaign cited youth energy, the get out the vote effort using state of the art technologies, general voter disaffection, and pollsters' likely undercounting of turnout generating by interest in the measure. "Together, these factors put 19 in a better position to win on Election Day than is indicated by the mainstream media narrative," campaign consultants Dan Newman and Chris Lehane argued in a memo Sunday.

"In the final days of this historic campaign, millions of Californians will be exposed in every media platform to the Yes on 19 message," said Stephen Gutwillig, DPA's California director. "We’re communicating to young voters in particular because they bear the brunt of marijuana enforcement and their turnout is crucial to Tuesday’s outcome."

Soros and DPA are by no means alone in joining the fight to legalize marijuana in California. In addition to advancing the public discussion on marijuana policy -- a Google search for "California Proposition 19" generates nearly 7.9 million hits -- the fight to pass Prop 19 has also generated the broadest outpouring of support for pot legalization ever. From labor to law enforcement, from identity politics organizations to the blogosphere, from entrepreneurs to elected officials, from law professors to doctors, from political organizations all across the ideological spectrum, a nice chunk of US civil society has rallied around Prop 19.

Prop 19 logo projected onto stadium side, World Series game, spotted Thursday night (twitpic.com/31xdog)
According to the Prop 19 campaign's endorsements page, it has law enforcement backing from the National Black Police Association, the National Latino Officers Association, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, former Seattle Police Chief Norm Stamper, former San Jose Police Chief Joe McNamara, retired California Judge Mike Grey, and dozens of other former and current police officers.

Prop 19 has been endorsed by more than a dozen prominent physicians, led by former US Surgeon General Jocelyn Elders, and more than 75 leading law professors. It has been endorsed by dozens of California elected officials, the Berkeley and Oakland city councils and the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors. Former Mexican President Vicente Fox even spoke out about it last week, saying "May God let it pass."

The measure has the backing of the California Green, Libertarian, Socialist, and Peace and Freedom parties, the Young Democrats, the Republican Liberty Caucus, and the Progressive Democrats of America, as well as 10 county Democratic Party organizations. The California NAACP, the Latino Voters League, the Northern and Southern California ACLU chapters are all on board, too, along with dozens of other state and local organizations. A mother's group was organized for the occasion.

In a real breakthrough, Prop 19 has also picked up significant support from organized labor. The Service Employee's International Union (SEIU) of California, the United Food and Commercial Workers Western States Council, and the longshoremen's union have all put their names and their political machines behind the initiative. So have a number of locals across the state.

Rolling Stone magazine publisher Jan Wenner kicked in $2,500, while insurance magnate Peter Lewis donated more than $200,000, Facebook co-founders Dustin Moskovitz and Sean Parker gave $70,000 and $100,000 respectively, while Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap president David Bronner kicked in $75,000, Men's Warehouse owner Robert Zimmer gave $50,000, and Washington, DC, activist and hemp store owner Adam Eidinger kicked in $25,000.

Other sizeable reported late donations from less prominent figures have come in as well. In the month of October, not counting the Soros million, the Prop 19 campaign has generated nearly $900,000 in donations.

All that money is making the last minute ad blitz possible. But that's not all that's going on in the final days. A massive phone banking and get out the vote effort has been joined by FiredogLake and its JustSayNow campaign, Students for Sensible Drug Policy, StoptheDrugWar.org, DPA, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, California Young Democrats, and California College Republicans.

For example, at UC-Berkeley, students are mobilizing around the initiative and are identifying it as the most important issue for young people in this election. In addition to tabling and canvassing, they held rallies this weekend, as did supporters in other parts of the state, all in an effort to create visibility and remind people to vote.

"Students are waking up and taking notice," said Kat Murti, a former president of Cal Students for Sensible Drug Policy and Yes on 19's Bay Area regional director. "Thousands of students lose financial aid each year due to marijuana offenses, including Berkeley students. This issue clearly affects and motivates them like no other political topic."

Let's hope that's the case, and that the ads, the media buzz, and the organizing draw out enough "unlikely voters" to change the world with a win on Tuesday.

United States

Prop 19: Last Minute Request

Help us bring Latino voters to the polls in California for Prop 19 - chip in $5.


Or click here to volunteer to call voters for Prop 19.

Dear friends,

We've received urgent requests from Hispanic community leaders for a Spanish language version of our phone banking tool to help get out the vote for Prop 19, and we need your help.

Polling shows that when Latino voters learn that Prop 19 will save tens of millions of dollars in incarceration costs, those who oppose the measure overwhelmingly become supporters.

But if they don't hear the message, they'll never know.

Can you chip in $5 or more to help us get Latino voters to the polls tomorrow?

If you can't donate, we still need your help.  Thousands of activists have called young California voters for the past month, and their votes are critical to whether Prop 19 will pass or fail.

Or, sign up to make calls yourself to young California voters for Prop 19.

We need your help to pull it off in these final hours.  The entire country is watching what happens in California.

Let's show everyone that the people who want an end marijuana prohibition believe passionately in the cause, and we're willing to fight every step of the way to make it happen.

Thanks for all you do.

Michael Whitney

Contribute to Just Say Now to support marijuana legalization. Click here:

United States

Yes on 19 Campaign Launches New "Stop the Insanity" Video (Video)

The Yes on 19 campaign launched its closing argument with a brand new web video. It emphasizes that for far too long the war on marijuana has cost the state billions of dollars and incarcerated hundreds of thousands of non-violent Californians, and that by stopping the insanity of marijuana prohibition the state can be led in a new direction.

The ad, which has an edgier flavor than previous messaging, was designed to address the human toll inflicted by marijuana prohibition. Unofficially called "Stop the Insanity," the ad is being targeted to younger CA voters who are less political, but moved by the subject of marijuana legalization. The rollout will be seen by 2 million Californians.

You can watch the video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=doRymwwLdE0

United States

Make the Call for Marijuana Law Reform (Action Alert)

Watch the instructional video and start making calls today!

Dear friends,

You can influence the passing of marijuana reform initiatives in 4 states by making calls from your home today!

Using the Just Say Now call tool is easy and can be done from anywhere.

Call California Voters– about Proposition 19 which would regulate marijuana similar to alcohol. 

Call Arizona Voters– about Prop 203 which would protect medical marijuana patients from arrest and prosecution.

Call Oregon Voters– about Measure 74 which allow the state to provide patients with safe access to medical marijuana through dispensaries.

Call South Dakota Voters– about Measure 13 which would protect medical marijuana patients from arrest and prosecution.

Help us end the war on marijuana - start calling voters and remind them to get to the polls vote for sensible marijuana reform!

Click here to start calling:

Each call just takes a few minutes, and you can start calling voters with just your email address or Facebook account. Check out our video that explains how to call, step by step.

With only a 48 hours left until the election, voicing your support for marijuana law reform has never been easier or more urgently important, so start calling voters today.

Thank you from SSDP!

Connect with SSDP


Prop 19: A Letter to the Undecided (Opinion)

United States
Targeting undecided voters, Jesse Levine of the Marijuana Arrest Research Project lays out arguments in favor of voting "Yes" on California's Proposition 19.
The Huffington Post (CA)

Zach Galifianakis Supports Prop 19 by Smoking a Joint on Bill Maher's Show (Video)

United States
Proponents have been stepping up the call to show favor for California's Prop 19. Taking to national television, actor Zach Galifianakis staged a rather dramatic show of support by lighting up a marijuana joint while debating the proposition on Real Time With Bill Maher.
The Washington Post (DC)

Say "No" to Lies; Say "Yes" to Prop. 19 (Opinion)

United States
NORML's Paul Armentano opines on the lies and distortions being employed against California's Proposition 19.
Opposing Views (CA)

Final Field Poll Has Prop 19 Down

Proposition 19, the tax and regulate marijuana legalization initiative is trailing 42% to 49% in the last Field poll of the campaign season. A Field poll last month had the initiative winning by the same margin.

The Field poll results are in line with other recent polls. The Talking Points Memo Poll Tracker, which does not include the latest Field poll, has Prop 19 losing 49.6% to 43.4%. Only two polls out of 10 in the past month show the measure winning.

It appears support for Prop 19 peaked in September, before any serious opposition emerged. The measure polled ahead in all five polls that month.

But the election isn't over until everyone votes on Tuesday, and the Yes on 19 campaign is in full-blown get out the vote mode until the polls close. Rallies, newspaper and electronic media ads, and phone banking will continue up until the last minute.

Still, the Field poll suggests a victory on Tuesday may be hard to come by. Only slim majorities of Democrats (51%) and independents (57%) favor the initiative, while nearly two-thirds (65%) of Republicans oppose it. Prop 19 is only polling at 49% in the San Francisco Bay area and 50% in the rest of northern California, and is trailing in Los Angeles County (38%), the Central Valley (39%), and the rest of southern California (41%).

The measure was trailing among men, 44% to 48%, and by a larger margin among women, 40% to 50%. It trailed in all age groups except voters under age 40, who favored by a margin of 54% to 38%.

Prop 19 didn't have majority support among any ethnic group in the latest Field poll. It fared best with whites (46%), followed by blacks (45%) and Hispanics (35%). But it got creamed by Asian ethnic voters. Only 22% of Chinese-Americans supported, only 19% of Korean-Americans supported it, and only 10% of Vietnamese-Americans supported it.

Can a surge of "unlikely voters" prove the polls wrong? Stay tuned.

United States

Ahead of Tuesday's Election Gmail Founder Donates to Legalize Marijuana

United States
Gmail and FriendFinder founder Paul Buchheit says that adults should be able to smoke marijuana for fun. Mr. Bucheit's donation of $100,000 to the California Yes on Proposition 19 campaign surpasses Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz’s $70,000 donation. Some more of the tech industry's brightest minds have also supported the campaign -- Sean Parker the financial supporter behind Napster and long-time Facebook collaborator, Paypal co-founder Peter Thiel, and Innovative Interfaces President Steve Silberstein have all donated money to it.
DailyTech (NC)

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