Nov 142012
 November 14, 2012

legalize cannabis maine diane russellState Legislators In Rhode Island And Maine To Introduce Marijuana Legalization Bills?

I just read an article on Reason.Com suggesting that bills will be introduced tomorrow in the Rhode Island and Maine legislatures to legalize marijuana. With Colorado and Washington State legalizing marijuana, and politicians still stunned that they are clearly behind schedule in other states, states across the country are trying to put marijuana legalization measures in place before the citizens get the chance to do so.

I know in my home state of Oregon, there has been a lot of talk of the legislature legalizing marijuana before the 2014 Election. The most significant call for such a policy change oddly enough came from The Oregonian. The Oregonian has ALWAYS hated marijuana, and for their Editorial Board to call out the legislature after the 2012 Election results was mind blowing. Below was the reasoning the Oregonian offered up to the Oregon legislature:

“And if business booms at Washington’s pot shops, as expected? Our neighbor to the north will collect millions of dollars in new “sin” taxes, with much of the money coming from Oregonians who’d be happy to keep their business — and taxes — in state if given the opportunity.

Losing out on all that revenue would be a pity. However, when policies diverge so widely in adjoining states — whether they govern marijuana or taxes – people move back and forth in pursuit of their interests. Want to stop the movement? Remove the incentives by leveling the policies.”

According to the article on Reason.Com, Oregon is far from the only state contemplating such a strategy. The article stated, ”Rhode Island Rep. Edith Ajello and Maine Rep. Diane Russell will hold a conference call tomorrow with the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) to announce the legislation. MPP says that “similar proposals will be submitted in at least two other states — Vermont and Massachusetts.”

Could you imagine if a state legislature legalized marijuana instead of the citizens having to force it down their throats via an initiative? Something that seemed impossible to me just two years ago seems like an almost certainty. If five states are pursuing a legislative strategy, I have to assume at least one of them will work. What if all five of them did? What if by the end of 2013 there are 7 states where marijuana is legal? The feds would be helpless, and would be forced to finally, finally respect state marijuana laws. I can only hold my breath in anticipation. What a great time to be a marijuana activists and consumer, am I right!?

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About Johnny Green

Johnny Green is a marijuana activist from Oregon. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Public Policy. Follow Johnny Green on Facebook and Twitter. Also, feel free to email any concerns.
  • http://churchofsmoke.org/ Jose

    The prophecy of the Mayan calendar looks like it is coming true. December 21, 2012 will be the beginning of a new age.

  • DavidTheExpert

    This is absolutely tremendous. Not only do we have popular opinion on our side, but we finally have the politicians themselves on our side.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dwayne-Hall/1225140244 Dwayne Hall

    Once they start counting the money, its all over but the crying!

  • Lunarcat

    We are seeing history in the making, we are living it! So. America & the rest of the world is watching us very closely. The president of Mexico has already called obama on the continuing drug policy & the fact that 2 of our States (the ones with balls & brains) have legalized pot. And now it is a “Mexican standoff” between the Feds & the States – once again. The Volestead Act was repealed in part because the States refused to back up the Feds & there just aren’t enough Feds to go around. Exciting times, wish I lived in Washington State.

  • http://twitter.com/kellyw37 Kelly Walker

    Decriminalize Marijuana for Medicinal or Recreational use in the state of Missouri.
    Help and sign the petition. Every vote counts. We need 25000 signatures to receive a response.

    https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/decriminalize-marijuana-medicinal-or-recreational-use-state-missouri/WVfByLXN

    • DavidTheExpert

      I wish you luck with decriminalizing/legalizing in Missouri, but those online petitions are absolutely useless. You should put your time and effort into drumming up some REAL support: get an initiative on your ballot, convince your friends and family to write your local representatives. But don’t waste your time with online petitions.

  • Keith

    Legalize marijuna now!Stop the madness cigarets are legal and alcohol and it kills millions of people every year.nobody ever died because of marijuna

  • arieba53

    Iowa will be the last state to legalize anything that has to do with marijuana!!. They won’t even legalize medical! Kudo’s to the states that have. Iowa is living in the ice age!!!

  • Roy

    So many alcoholics out there killing people crashing getting into fights and all that yet alcohol is legal. The state needs to get with the fucking program and legalize marijuana

  • Alan Talbert

    Unfortunately Alabama will not be one of the states. Our narrow minded gov. Bently said he will not sign anything in favor of marijuana. Very sad that a state in the debt we are in is so narrow minded and selfish

  • http://www.facebook.com/dana.deck Dana Deck

    How do I get Florida involved?

  • Judy

    iIS GEORGIA GOING TO LEGLIZE MARIJUANA, IN 2014, FOR CHRONIS PAIN PEOPLE?