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Maine Campaign Submits More Than Twice Signatures Necessary to Qualify for Ballot

February 4th, 2016 4 Comments Ľ Marijuana Policy Project

After months of hard work, the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol in Maine  have submitted over 100,000 signatures to the Maine Secretary of State. This effort would not have been possible without the dedication of Mainers who believe in ending the failed policy of marijuana prohibition, and the sheer number of signatures is a good indicator of how badly the people want to bring this issue to voters.ME Release Header - NEW

Soon, we will hear back from the Secretary of State, but we are very confident that our campaign collected enough valid signatures to qualify for the November ballot.

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Arizona Legalization Campaign Uses Phoenix Open-inspired Billboard to Educate Voters

February 4th, 2016 1 Comment Ľ Marijuana Policy Project

This weekend, the Waste Management Phoenix Open, one of the largest golf events of the year, will take place in Scottsdale. This tournament has been called ‚ÄúThe Greatest Party on Grass,‚ÄĚ based, in part, on the amount of alcohol consumed at the event. The tournament even has Coors as one of its sponsors.

In response, the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol¬†posted a billboard in Phoenix posing the question, ‚ÄúIf beer and golf make for the ‚ÄėGreatest Party on Grass‚Äô‚Ķ Why can‚Äôt adults enjoy a¬†safer¬†party on grass?” As you can see, it is a fun billboard. But the message is quite serious. We as a society let adults enjoy alcohol ‚ÄĒ as we should ‚ÄĒ but we punish adults who prefer a safer substance. That‚Äôs just wrong.

CRMLA Golf Billboard

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Vermont Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Launches TV Ad Campaign

January 28th, 2016 No Comments Matt Simon

 

The Vermont Coalition to Regulate Marijuana released a new television ad this week, produced by the Marijuana Policy Project, featuring Vermont’s former top law enforcement official. The ad began airing statewide on Tuesday and will appear on WCAX, CNN, Fox News Channel, and MSNBC through Sunday.VT commercial screenshot

In the ad, titled “Time to End Prohibition (Again),” former Vermont Attorney General Kimberly Cheney points out that “marijuana prohibition has caused a lot of the same problems” as Alcohol Prohibition. The ad ends with Cheney urging viewers to contact their state senators and tell them, “It‚Äôs time to end prohibition and start regulating marijuana in Vermont.”

In a news release, MPP’s Montpelier-based New England political director, Matt Simon, said:

“Mr. Cheney decided to appear in this ad for the same reason he served as the state’s top law enforcement official. He cares strongly about the safety and wellbeing of Vermont citizens. 

‚ÄúThere are a lot of current and former law enforcement officials out there who support ending prohibition and regulating marijuana.¬†It‚Äôs important that citizens and lawmakers hear from them.‚ÄĚ

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Massachusetts Campaign Submits 100K Signatures

December 2nd, 2015 2 Comments Ľ Morgan Fox

Yesterday, the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol in Massachusetts submitted more than 100,000 signatures to the secretary of state. Only 64,750 signatures are needed, and supporters are confident that the measure will qualify for the 2016 ballot!

Associated Press reports:

The proposal would allow Massachusetts residents 21 or older to possess up to 1 ounce of marijuana. It would also create a 3.75 percent state excise tax on retail marijuana sales that would be assessed on top of the state’s 6.25 percent sales tax.

“You don’t want the tax to be too high because then it’s difficult to undercut the black market, and you want the tax to be high enough so you can finance the regulation and have some money left over,” said Will Luzier, campaign director for the group, as he emptied pages of signatures from two Christmas shopping bags at the state elections office.

The Legislature now has until the first week in May to vote on the proposal, but it’s unlikely to win approval from lawmakers given opposition to legalized marijuana from key state officials including Republican Gov. Charlie Baker and Attorney General Maura Healey, a Democrat.

Senate President Stan Rosenberg said last week he expected voters would ultimately decide the issue. Assuming no action by lawmakers, organizers would need to collect at least 10,792 additional signatures to place the question on the November 2016 ballot.

 

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Rep. Blumenauer Calls for Firing of DEA Director

November 18th, 2015 14 Comments Ľ Morgan Fox

Recently, we shared a story about interim DEA head Chuck Rosenberg referring to medical marijuana as a “joke.” Since then, a Change.org petition started by Marijuana Majority¬†calling for Rosenberg to be fired for his lack of compassion for patients and poor understanding of marijuana has garnered almost 100,000 signatures!

Today, Rep. Earl Blumenaur (D-OR), who has been a champion of marijuana policy reform at the federal level, called on Congress to demand that Rosenberg be replaced!

You can watch the coverage from C-SPAN.

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MPP’s Dan Riffle Discusses Impact of Marijuana Initiatives on Presidential Election

October 16th, 2015 No Comments Morgan Fox

MPP has been paying close attention to the slate of candidates running for president next year. Marijuana policy reform has been coming up more and more as the hopefuls try to adjust to increasing public support for ending prohibition, but could the issue have an impact on who is the next leader of the United States?

Last night, MPP’s Dan Riffle spoke with Fox News about how marijuana initiatives could affect the 2016 presidential election.

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Marijuana Policy at the Democratic Presidential Debate

October 14th, 2015 No Comments Morgan Fox

Last night, the first Democratic Party national presidential debates took place, and as expected, the issue of marijuana policy was addressed. Bernie Sanders stood out by becoming the first mainstream, major party presidential candidate to publicly support regulating marijuana.

CNN has the video:

After hearing these responses, MPP has updated our Presidential Report Card and upgraded Bernie Sanders to “A”, elevating him above Rand Paul to the head of the class. Hillary Clinton was also upgraded to “B” for her support of medical marijuana.

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Arizona Campaign Could Earn More Than $40 Million for Schools

August 20th, 2015 6 Comments Ľ Morgan Fox

UPDATE: The Grand Canyon Institute, an independent Arizona-based think tank, has released a report that concludes the proposed initiative to regulate and tax marijuana like alcohol in Arizona would likely raise more money for schools than backers of the initiative estimated last month.

According to a press release issued by the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol:

According to the Grand Canyon Institute, a ‚Äúcentrist think-thank led by a bipartisan group of former state lawmakers, economists, community leaders, and academicians,‚ÄĚ tax revenue from the initiative would initially generate $64 million annually, including $51 million for K-12 education and all-day kindergarten programs. It estimates that by 2019, once the new system is fully rolled out, it would raise $72 million per year, including approximately $58 million for public education.

‚ÄúThe Grand Canyon Institute‚Ķfinds that the revenue projections were conservative as proponents claimed,‚ÄĚ the report reads. ‚ÄúThe revenue gains do exceed the $40 million espoused by proponents of the initiative.‚ÄĚ

—–

The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol in Arizona held a press conference at the State Capitol Wednesday to highlight the fact that the initiative would generate more than $40 million in annual funding for public education in Arizona.

The initiative includes a 15% tax on retail marijuana sales, and 80% of that funding would be allocated to public schools and full-day kindergarten programs.

The campaign conservatively estimates that this tax would generate more than $40 million each year, and it could be an even higher amount than that.

KTVK reports:

azfamily.com 3TV | Phoenix Breaking News, Weather, Sport

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Arizona Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Gathers 50K Signatures

August 7th, 2015 No Comments Morgan Fox

The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol in Arizona has gathered more than 50,000 signatures out of the 150,000 that they will need to obtain by next July in order to secure a vote on the issue. Opponents of the measure have already conceded that the vote is likely inevitable.

Proponents think this is an indicator that adults in Arizona are sick of being charged as felons for using a substance that is safer than alcohol.

KPNX reports:

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MPP and Allies Launch Texas TV Ad Campaign

May 14th, 2015 11 Comments Ľ Morgan Fox

This week, we began airing a TV ad in Texas featuring Russell Jones, a retired narcotics detective and Texas Hill Country resident. Jones says that people under the influence of marijuana are much less problematic than people under the influence of alcohol, and that ‚Äúlaw enforcement officials have more important things to do with their time.‚ÄĚ Its primary purpose: to urge lawmakers to support HB 507, which would reduce criminal penalties for marijuana possession in the Lone Star State.

The TV ad ‚ÄĒ online¬†here¬†‚ÄĒ is airing on CNN, ESPN, and Fox News Channel through Thursday at midnight,¬†and received a lot of media attention, including from Huffington Post, International Business Times, San Antonio Current, and many others.

The ad cites annual arrest reports produced by the Texas Department of Public Safety that show that more than 360,000 arrests for marijuana possession were made in Texas from 2009-2013.

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