MPP and our allies across the country passed nine out of 10 marijuana-related ballot initiatives yesterday ... and also defeated a bad initiative. This makes yesterday the most successful day in MPP's 14-year history.
MICHIGAN: MPP's medical marijuana initiative passed by 63% to 37% in Michigan, making it the 13th state to protect medical marijuana patients from arrest and jail. While any new medical marijuana law is a great victory, this one is especially notable, since Michigan is now the first medical marijuana state in the Midwest, and the second largest medical marijuana state in the country (with California being the largest). See http://www.stoparrestingpatients.org/ for details.
MASSACHUSETTS: MPP's landmark initiative to decriminalize marijuana in Massachusetts passed by 65% to 35%. The measure removes the threat of arrest and jail for possessing an ounce or less of marijuana, replacing it with a $100 fine, which can be paid through the mail without lawyers or court appearances, just like a speeding ticket. This is the first time in history that voters have passed a statewide initiative to decriminalize marijuana! See http://www.sensiblemarijuanapolicy.org/ for details.
CALIFORNIA: A measure that would have required the loss of public housing benefits for recent drug convictions lost by a 70% to 30% margin. (The measure would have also increased spending on prisons and law enforcement, as well as increased penalties for gang-related activities and other crimes.)
CALIFORNIA: A measure that would have expanded the number of drug offenders diverted from prison into treatment — as well as improving the marijuana decriminalization law that was originally enacted by the state legislature in 1975 — lost by 60% to 40%. See http://www.prop5yes.com/ for details.
BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA: A measure (which received $5,000 from the MPP grants program) to expand the non-residential zones where medical marijuana dispensaries can locate, issue zoning certificates, and bring Berkeley marijuana possession limits in line with recent court rulings passed by 62% to 38%. See http://www.yesonjj.com/ for details.
FAYETTEVILLE, ARKANSAS: A measure (which received $3,972 from the MPP grants program) to make adult marijuana offenses the lowest priority for local law enforcement passed by 66% to 34%. See http://www.sensiblefayetteville.com/ for details.
HAWAII COUNTY, HAWAII: A measure (which received $19,800 from the MPP grants program) to make adult marijuana offenses the lowest priority for local law enforcement passed by 53% to 39%. See http://www.projectpeacefulsky.org/ for details.
FOUR DISTRICTS IN MASSACHUSETTS: Voters in four out of four state House districts passed four nonbinding public policy questions directing each district's state representative to vote in favor of legislation that would allow seriously ill patients to use medical marijuana if they have the approval of their physicians. See http://www.dpfma.org/ for details.