Marijuana Policy Project Alert.....................

The Massachusetts government has announced that it has certified a landmark marijuana decriminalization initiative for the November 4 ballot — which is the first time in history that an initiative to decriminalize marijuana possession will appear on any statewide ballot.*

When MPP polled Massachusetts voters in February 2007 on this question, we found that the initiative was supported by a 60% to 30% margin (with 10% undecided).

The initiative would reduce the penalties in Massachusetts so that the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana will be punishable only by a ticket and a $100 fine — similar to a speeding ticket — with no arrest, no jail or other penalties, no lawyer's fees, and no court appearances. Please visit http://www.sensiblemarijuanapolicy.org/ to learn more about the initiative.

MPP has been working closely with the Massachusetts campaign operation, the Committee for Sensible Marijuana Policy (CSMP), to ensure the initiative's placement on the ballot. CSMP turned in more than 100,000 signatures last November and another 20,000 last month to qualify the initiative for the ballot.

Your help is now needed to wage a strong campaign between now and Election Day to ensure that this groundbreaking initiative passes. Would you please visit www.SensibleMarijuanaPolicy.org/donate.html to donate $10 or more today?

CSMP — led by campaign manager and long-time Massachusetts activist Whitney A. Taylor — is well-positioned to make history this November: In addition to completing both parts of the intensive signature drive, the campaign successfully lobbied the Massachusetts Legislature not to take any action that would harm the campaign, in addition to building a statewide coalition of opinion leaders who support the initiative and volunteers who will be working to pass the initiative.

Would you please visit www.SensibleMarijuanaPolicy.org/donate.html to make your most generous donation to the campaign today? I want to thank you in advance for anything you can do to help.

Kampia signature (e-mail sized)

Rob Kampia
Executive Director
Marijuana Policy Project
Washington, D.C.

* Seven out of seven statewide initiatives to end various aspects of marijuana prohibition have failed over the course of our nation's history — in California (1972), Oregon (1986), Alaska (2000 and 2004), Nevada (2002 and 2006), and Colorado (2006). At a minimum, all seven initiatives would have removed all penalties for marijuana possession.  The Massachusetts initiative is polling much better than any of these seven initiatives because it seeks a more modest change — to treat marijuana possession like a speeding ticket, rather than imposing no penalty at all.

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