Voters in Oregon may quite possibly make history today by becoming the third of the United States to legalize marijuana. On the ballot, Measure 91, also known as the Control, Regulation, and Taxation of Marijuana and Industrial Hemp Act of 2014, will allow adults aged twenty-one years or older to possess up to eight ounces of dried marijuana flowers and up to four marijuana plants. Under this measure, the retail sale of cannabis will be regulated by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission. The state medical marijuana laws will remain unchanged.
Support for what has been referred to as “the most regulated and strict marijuana measure ever voted upon in Oregon,” has been steady throughout the polling season, but in recent days it has increased. The most recent poll by Survey USA was released on October 28. It shows a majority of voters approve of the marijuana legalization initiative in the state. This poll shows fifty-two percent of all surveyed support voting yes on Measure 91, and this is the number advocates hope will show true at the end of the election day.
The graph above depicts results from three different polls by Survey USA, and includes the most recent results that are written in the paragraph above. The far left on the graph shows results from poll released September 25, where voter approval of legalizing marijuana was only at forty-four percent. The middle number, showing a forty-eight percent approval for Measure 91 from likely voters, was released October 20. In about one month, voter approval increased four percent. The numbers on the far right are from the most recent poll, released October 28. Just eight days later, approval increased to fifty-two percent.
The likelihood of this marijuana law reform initiative being passed by voters increases with the number of votes being cast. Want to help the cause?
Send your friends in Oregon a friendly reminder to vote, no matter which side of the fence they are on, using a Facebook App. First, find out if your registered friends in Oregon have already voted by going to DidTheyVoteYet.Org. The app can be downloaded through that site, and it will search your Facebook friends for you. It will populate a list of your friends who have not yet cast a ballot, and then you can call and text them until they exercise their American right to vote. As the Measure 91 initiative pointed out, marijuana cannot legalize itself.
Libertarian candidate running for United States Senator in North Carolina, Sean Haugh, has built his campaign on being a normal guy who drinks craft beer in a state where craft beer is king. Now, after an interview with Bills and Brews, he is also known as the normal guy running for Senate who knows, first hand, about the medical benefits of smoking marijuana.
When asked during the interview if he has smoked pot during the campaign, Haugh responded,
“I actually do. This is the first time I’ve ever admitted it to anybody, but this is the first time anybody’s ever asked me directly.”
Just as other members of the libertarian party, Haugh believes all drugs should be legal in the United States. Not because he supports anyone doing them, but because if all drugs were legal, people with addiction problems would be more likely to seek treatment. His point is that the war on drugs has forced drug usage underground where people are not comfortable asking for help because of fear of prosecution.
During the interview he also referred to his decision to run for Senate as being an act of conscience, inspired by the fact that he wants to be able to vote for something other than more war and more debt. He wants to fill that void for other voters who want the same.
Do you want to know more about where Haugh stands on other topics? He has a series of campaign video advertisements, all of which depict him as a normal, every-day, average American man, where during a two to three minute time frame he gives his opinion on a selected topic. In all videos, he is wearing a t-shirt and casually discussing his views while sipping on a beer in his basement.
Watch Haugh’s video, below, where he shares more about his opinion on why the war on drugs has failed.
Until recently the tiny town of Sisters, Oregon was not ready to allow medical marijuana dispensaries to operate within city limits. In November, twelve hundred voters in this mountain town will reconsider that decision because of a large demand for medical marijuana by citizens.
Currently, the nearest medical marijuana dispensary is twenty-two miles away in Bend, Oregon. Medical marijuana patients living in Sisters have realized that they would rather be able to obtain medicine in their home town than drive forty minutes to get it. Measure 9-101 can change that.
Sisters, Oregon City Council President, McKibben Womack told KLCC News,
“Proponents are saying we want it because then we don’t have to travel to Bend. Obviously there are those who are in pain and say this is the only thing that works. Those who are against– their big concerns are our children.”
If Measure 9-101 passes in November, the city council will be responsible for establishing regulations to respond to the concerns of the marijuana ending up in the hands of children. Any dispensary, of course, will still have to follow the state imposed guidelines for operation which include strict rules for location in proximity to schools, residential neighborhoods and the like.
More and more Americans are being introduced to the benefits of medical marijuana, and how much it is helping to relieve symptoms of those suffering from debilitating medical conditions throughout the world. For this same reason, it is likely that more districts throughout the state may revisit original decisions against medical marijuana dispensaries.