Oregonians to vote to legalize recreational marijuana
July 23rd, 2014
10:06 AM ET
5 months ago

Oregonians to vote to legalize recreational marijuana

(CNN) - A citizen-led petition to place legalization of recreational marijuana on the November ballot in Oregon obtained enough signatures, making the Beaver State the next place pot could be legally sold, bought and consumed.

More than 88,500 people signed the petition, enough to place the initiative before voters on November 4.

If passed, Oregon would become the third state to legalize pot after Colorado and Washington to allow recreational use of marijuana. Another 21 states, including Oregon, allow the use of medicinal marijuana.

Poll: Coloradans say no to pot in bars and clubs

“This is our moment to be part of history and lead a movement,” said Dominic Lopez, metro regional organizer for New Approach Oregon, the group that organized the petition. “Treating marijuana use as a crime has failed, but together we can win a more sensible approach and better the lives of Oregonians.”

Oregon voters rejected a marijuana legalization measure in 2012, the year that Washington and Oregon passed theirs.

Alaska voters will also decide on similar legalization in November.


Filed under: Marijuana • Oregon
soundoff (34 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    Legalize it. It should have an impact on reducing drug dealing.

    Legalization could also reduce the number of people who move on to harder drugs. Marijuana has often been called a "gateway" drug. While that is true to a certain extent, it is also patently false to a larger extent. The phrase "gateway drug" itself is misleading.

    Use of marijuana does not necessarily lead to use of stronger drugs. What leads to stronger drug use is that the venues where marijuana is sold may also have the stronger drugs, and a dealer pushing them onto new customers.

    July 23, 2014 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  2. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Alaska voters will also decide on similar legalization in November."

    I could have sworn that it was legal when I lived in Alaska back in the late 70s? Not on the military facilities where I lived, but on privately owned land.

    July 23, 2014 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  3. ge

    use the new tax money for universal health care -not for the military to build jets no body wants

    July 23, 2014 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  4. Bill from GA

    While some states, and many more Americans, are revising their opinion of marijuana, the Federal Government is still taking no action to remedy this problem. Until the Feds remove the national stigma against marijuana, much of the research on medicinal, and other, effects of marijuana will not be studied by reputable organizations.

    Where is the leadership on this issue? 'Legal' marijuana is still in violation of Federal Laws. With a change in Washington, all progress at the state level could be reverted. And. does our President not care that hundreds of thousands of Americans are still being arrested each year?

    Obama, and Congress, need to address this matter NOW.

    July 23, 2014 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  5. Fair is Fair

    Lynda/Minnesota

    "Alaska voters will also decide on similar legalization in November."

    I could have sworn that it was legal when I lived in Alaska back in the late 70s? Not on the military facilities where I lived, but on privately owned land.
    ---------
    Close... Alaska was one of the first to "decriminalize", which i different from "legalize".

    July 23, 2014 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  6. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    I'm sorry Rudy but I must respectfully disagree. Marijuana is not a gateway drug. People use hard drugs because they want to. Because the Marijuana high is not the high they're looking for. People need to stop blaming Marijuana because some idiot wants to get high as a kite. I have never nor will I ever have the inclination to do hard drugs. Also many weak minded people do hard drugs due to peer pressure, which was never a problem for me. I do what I do because I want to do it not because others are doing it.

    July 23, 2014 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  7. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA - Take Back the House

    Too bad for Virginia. We'll probably be the last state in the union to ever legalize it.

    July 23, 2014 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  8. Lynda/Minnesota

    Fair is Fair
    Lynda/Minnesota

    "Alaska voters will also decide on similar legalization in November."

    I could have sworn that it was legal when I lived in Alaska back in the late 70s? Not on the military facilities where I lived, but on privately owned land.
    ---
    Close... Alaska was one of the first to "decriminalize", which i different from "legalize".
    ---------------

    Ah, yes. Thanks.

    July 23, 2014 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  9. O'drama ya Mama

    happy happy joy joy!

    July 23, 2014 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  10. HJA

    " Marijuana has often been called a "gateway" drug"
    The greatest gateway drug is alcohol.

    July 23, 2014 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  11. Fair is Fair

    Hmmmm... where's Sniffitt and his take on the Supremacy Clause?

    July 23, 2014 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  12. Silence DoGood

    @Bill from GA
    While some states, and many more Americans, are revising their opinion of marijuana, the Federal Government is still taking no action to remedy this problem. Until the Feds remove the national stigma against marijuana, much of the research on medicinal, and other, effects of marijuana will not be studied by reputable organizations.

    Where is the leadership on this issue? 'Legal' marijuana is still in violation of Federal Laws. With a change in Washington, all progress at the state level could be reverted. And. does our President not care that hundreds of thousands of Americans are still being arrested each year?

    Obama, and Congress, need to address this matter NOW.
    ------------
    #1 remove head from sand
    #2 google DOJ Marijuana announcements 2013-2014
    #3 grow up

    July 23, 2014 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  13. Michael MN

    I agree alcohol is by far leads to more deaths , more addictions and is a gateway drug

    Yes folks Alcohol is a drug

    July 23, 2014 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  14. Thomas

    @ge
    use the new tax money for universal health care -not for the military to build jets no body wants

    ==========

    Great idea , I'd vote for that . All the tax revenue would go to health care and rehabilitation .

    July 23, 2014 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  15. Sniffit

    ""Marijuana has often been called a "gateway" drug"
    The greatest gateway drug is alcohol."

    Bingo. Gotta love watching some wife-beating drunk yelling about the dangers of weed while calling people "hippies."

    "Hmmmm... where's Sniffitt and his take on the Supremacy Clause?"

    States can make heir own criminal laws. It doesn't change that the feds still have theirs and can enforce them...how and whether are largely matters for executive and prosecutorial discretion. All it really would do is make it so Oregon doesn't arrest, prosecute, etc., people for weed. As far as I know...and I doubt I'm wrong here...nothing in this legalization effort attempts to nullify any federal laws or prevent their enforcement. Anyway, as far as I can tell, this doesn't really raise many Supremacy Clause or pre-emption issues. To the extent there is some debate as to whether local and state law enforcement would be obligated to enforce the federal laws, as opposed to simply not violate them themselves, that gets a little trickier and nuanced than blanket assertions about the Supremacy Clause. Also, I'm pretty sure there are very specific laws and regulations covering the interaction between federal and state law enforcement...and I'm not really familiar with them.

    July 23, 2014 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  16. Sniffit

    "The latest federal appeals court ruling shows they have no legal authority to issue subsidies outside an exchange established by the state."

    Are you talking about the 2-1 decision in the DC Circuit Court in which a Dubya appointee and a HW Bush appointee played blatant semantic games to arrive at patently absurd conclusions while ignoring the record to decide that the subsidies are politically inconvenient for the GOP? Or are you talking about the 4th Circuit where they decided 3-0 that the subsidies through the federal exchange are perfectly lawful because it's more than painfully obvious that the entire ACA was designed and structured and intended to do so and no disingenuous semantic games can avoid that fact?

    Oh, and have fun watching the DC Circuit Court get appealed to the full bench in DC, which is 8 appointed by Dems and 5 appointed by GOPers. Your only hope is that Kennedy decides to ignore reality yet again when it hits the SCOTUS. In fact, one might argue that Roberts, concerned about his legacy, won't even be willing to wade as far out into reality-denial territory as it took for the black-robed politicians in the DC Circuit to arrange for their preferred result.

    July 23, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  17. guest

    I find the DoJ page on marijuana to be the art of irony. Marijuana is classified as schedule 1 drug -> no medicinal uses at all, the drug fact sheet goes on however to explain that, ya, they make medicine out of it.

    July 23, 2014 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  18. Rudy NYC

    Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    I'm sorry Rudy but I must respectfully disagree. Marijuana is not a gateway drug. People use hard drugs because they want to. Because the Marijuana high is not the high they're looking for. People need to stop blaming Marijuana because some idiot wants to get high as a kite. I have never nor will I ever have the inclination to do hard drugs. Also many weak minded people do hard drugs due to peer pressure, which was never a problem for me. I do what I do because I want to do it not because others are doing it.
    --------------------------
    I wasn't declaring marijuana a gateway drug. If I sounded like that, then I wasn't clear and misspoke.

    I was trying to point out misconception behind that reputation. It's not the drug, but where and how it is frequently sold that makes it a "gateway" drug. If you sell it in stores, the "gateway" to harder drugs disappears.

    July 23, 2014 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  19. drake mallard

    Why is the most useful plant known to man, a plant that has never killed anyone, illegal? It's illegal because corporations that buy politicians fear competition from superior, safer, and more environmentally friendly hemp products. And because the government loves to oppress, jail, and steal from the people! Alcohol, tobacco, petroleum, cotton, timber, chemical, and pharmaceutical companies, to name just a few, see marijuana as unwanted competition.

    The pharmaceutical industry is a 500 billion dollar industry world wide with over half that market existing in the U.S. It is one of the most powerful industries in the world due to the fact that it is about medicine. These are very corrupt and very immoral companies that brainwash the world into thinking that their products are safe, reliable, and good for you. Over the past century the pharma-cartel and their army of lobbyists have built an intricate maze of control, infiltration, economic incentives, bribes, manipulation, and deception. This industry practically owns seats in congress because of how much lobbying power it has. Why does any of this matter?....MONEY

    What would happen in weed was made legal? If weed could be used on a nationwide scale to help treat things such as symptoms of cancer, AIDS, multiple sclerosis, pain, glaucoma, epilepsy, and many other conditions what would happen to the pharmaceutical companies? They would lose billions in revenue. ALL BECAUSE THEY DONT HAVE A PILL WITH THE SAME EFFECT AS WEED THAT YOU BUY FROM THEM. Weed loses them money. Therefore when any legislation gets put into place this industry pretty much has the power to make sure it doesn't pass

    July 23, 2014 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  20. Rudy NYC

    Sniffit

    "The latest federal appeals court ruling shows they have no legal authority to issue subsidies outside an exchange established by the state."
    ---------------------------
    Only by the narrowest interpretation of "state" would someone discount the federal government as meeting the definition, especially in light of the fact that the federal exchanges were created for the states that did not create their own.

    But, if the far right wing wants to compel the Republican Party to continue down the path of taking health insurance away from millions of people, which would only raise the premiums on tens of millions more, then please carry on.

    July 23, 2014 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  21. Dead Bear

    Anyone unaware of the collateral damage done to neighboring countries by our failed War on Drugs need look no further than crisis on the southern border. Thousands upon thousands of people fleeing horrific violence perpetrated by drug traffickers who are financed by narcotics sales in America. Hopefully other states will follow suit and bring about some common sense policy in this country.

    July 23, 2014 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  22. Rudy NYC

    Dead Bear

    Anyone unaware of the collateral damage done to neighboring countries by our failed War on Drugs need look no further than crisis on the southern border.
    ------------------------
    It was never really about a "war on drugs" in the right wing. It was really all about selling guns, rifles, and other military hardware. It was all about the money, and keeping the military industrial complex fully fed when we were not actively involved in a major war. Don't forget Reagan's Iran/Contra scandal.

    July 23, 2014 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  23. MrManhattan

    And tbe march towards a First World future continues....

    July 23, 2014 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  24. Libertarian

    I wish the whole country would decriminalize all victimless crimes. As far as I'm concerned, people can use all the drugs they want, as long as they don't put other people's lives in danger (such as, by driving under the influence), and as long as they're not stealing to pay for it. We should save the prisons for people who commit crimes that create real victims.

    July 23, 2014 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  25. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    Very well put Drake. A few years ago I read somewhere that the US is the biggest user of prescription drugs in the world. That something like 70% of Americans are on some type of prescription drug. That's alarming to me but not to mainstream America. I adore my co workers but a few of them have offered me Valium or Vicodin after a tough day and I always turn them down and say I'm having a Margarita after work. The truth is I'm having a Margarita and a 'J'!😄😄

    July 23, 2014 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
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