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All Posts Tagged: Politics

Recreational Marijuana Legalization Makes It to Official Ballot in Alaska

Legalizing recreational marijuana had made it to the official ballot in Alaska as confirmed by Mead Treadwell, the state’s lieutenant governor. The recreational marijuana initiative petition 13PSUM notice of proper filing was posted on the government of Alaska’s website. The proposition would be put on the election ballot for the Primary Election on August 19, 2014.

The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana, the body behind the initiative submitted 45,000 signatures by Jan. 8, while the minimum requirement was 30, 000. 36, 000 signatures have already been validated.

Campaign spokesman Taylor Bickford said in a statement, “A bipartisan tidal wave of public support for regulating marijuana like alcohol in Alaska has pushed this issue onto the ballot and we will be running an aggressive campaign designed to build on that momentum.”

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Legalize marijuana group sets up shop in Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — One group is hoping to change marijuana laws in Texas. The Marijuana Policy Project helped to pass Colorado’s recreational marijuana laws back in 2012, and now they’re setting up shop here in Austin.

The Marijuana Policy Project says they’re giving themselves five years to legalize marijuana in Texas. They’ve already helped pass similar laws in 19 other states, and now they’re bringing that same game plan to The Lone Star State.

“People in Texas think that change is impossible,” said Rob Kampia, The Marijuana Project’s executive director. “When I say our plan is five years, they’re sometimes surprised that it’s such a short term plan, but I think its completely reasonable.”

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Marijuana Decriminalization in U.S. Capital Passes Council

The Washington city council voted to decriminalize marijuana consumption in private homes, adding the nation’s capital to a growing list of states that have loosened sanctions for using the drug.

The council today approved reducing the punishment for possession of as much as an ounce of marijuana to a fine, instead of potential jail time. The bill goes to Mayor Vincent Gray, a Democrat, who has said he will sign it, and the U.S. Congress, which can reject it.

At least 17 states have legalized or decriminalized recreational use or possession, putting them at odds with federal law. Washington state and Colorado have legalized the sale of the drug for recreational use, and advocates are pushing similar measures in other states.

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MPP’s Rob Kampia Discusses the Future of Texas Marijuana Policy Reform

MPP’s Rob Kampia Discusses the Future of Texas Marijuana Policy Reform


On March 1, MPP officially began lobbying for marijuana policy reform directly in the Texas legislature. Over the next several years, we will be working with supportive lawmakers and local advocates to remove the threat of jail for simple possession of marijuana, and eventually end marijuana prohibition altogether in the Lone Star State.

Here is MPP’s executive director, Rob Kampia, discussing the future of marijuana policy reform on KXAN:

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Marijuana: Future in the United States

Marijuana’s reputation in the United States has seen a dramatic shift over the past four to five decades. It has gone  from having an intensely negative legal and social stigma including heavy condemnation from the government, to being increasingly accepted by the public and legalized for medicinal use in twenty states (legalized for recreational use in two). Even the current President of the United States openly admitted to inhaling marijuana in his past. Times are truly changing and fast for the controversial plant, which leads many to ask: what is marijuana’s future in the United States?

So far, the states that have legalized marijuana for medicinal use are, in alphabetical order: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington (also District of Columbia). Colorado and Washington are the only states that have also legalized the recreational use of marijuana (quick note for those who don’t already know: medicinal use is for patients whose doctors prescribe and deem marijuana as a sufficient medicine to their ailment(s) while recreational use is allowed for anyone twenty-one years or older). With more states considering medicinal and even recreational legalization, it seems marijuana’s future in America is inching closer and closer to a nationwide legalization, but that is only speculation at this point. Between conservatives (particularly in the South) still opposed to the acceptance and use of marijuana as well as the fact that marijuana is still federally illegal, there is still plenty of red tape to circumvent before aforementioned nationwide legalization could occur.

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Marijuana Moms More Powerful Than Soccer Moms

The medical marijuana debate is in full swing with 20 states on board and several others ready to take the plunge. An unlikely source of advocates namely, moms, could become as powerful as soccer moms in the fight for their children. Soccer moms have earned the reputation of being  intelligent cheerleaders and outspoken advocates for their children’s physical activities. There is nothing more powerful than a mother advocating for their child. Mothers of children with severe health challenges are adopting the same take-charge attitudes as many of the so-called “soccer moms.” A mother wants to offer her child any and all options that may be available to help them, despite politic banter from people who do not know what it is like to be a parent of an ill child. Studies have shown marijuana to be a real medical solution to many ailments including some in children.

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Marijuana Revenue Could Pay Off Our National Debt

Colorado estimates generating 100 million in marijuana taxes, after generating one billion in marijuana sales. Do you really believe that the drug Cartels will walk away from that king of revenue flow? How long do you think it will take for other States open marijuana sales?

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The Marijuana Industry Pleads With Congress: Treat Us Like a Regular Business

The House Budget Committee isn’t the most august room in Congress, but it commands respect, what with its oil portraits of former chairmen including Leon Panetta, who went on to be Defense Secretary and CIA director.

But  it was the site on Tuesday of a briefing by the National Cannabis Industry Association, which you can think of as the pot trade group. So it’s probably not surprising that one of the questions asked of Rep. Jared Polis, a Colorado Democrat leading the fight for reform of federal marijuana laws, was how many of his colleagues smoked pot.

Five or 10, he guessed. But he noted he’d never seen any smoke. And besides, since the House is made up of so many old members, the number was bound to be small.

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Colo. poll: 57 percent say legal pot OK

A majority of Coloradans believe marijuana use should be legal, marking growing support since the 2012 ballot measure and two months after its legalization in the state in January.

Fifty-seven percent of Colorado voters think marijuana use should be legal, while only 35 percent think it should be illegal, according to a poll published Wednesday by Public Policy Polling.

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The pollster notes that the 22-point margin shows an increase in support for legalization since the state’s ballot measure in 2012 passed by 10 points.

However, while a majority in the state favor legalization, few have yet to partake themselves in using marijuana. Only 8 percent say they’ve used the drug since it became legal in January and 89 percent say they have not used it.

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Federal inaction spells bad news for marijuana business

FORTUNE — The extremely slow pace at which the federal government is moving toward its inevitable legalization of marijuana is creating two major problems, one short-term and one long-term.

In the short term, an industry that most Americans want to see legitimized is severely hampered by the fact that what it does is a still serious federal crime. In the long term, the lack of federal oversight now, in the industry’s nascent stages, will almost certainly end up with the pot business consolidated in the hands of a few big companies with enormous political and economic power, to the detriment of its own customers, people who work in the business, the environment, and our social well-being.

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