There will not be a need for recounts. There will be no disputing the results. Marijuana legalization efforts on ballots across the country won in landslide victories.
Five more states legalized cannabis in some form or another. In addition, Oregon decriminalized drug possession and voters in Washington D.C. approved a measure to decriminalize psychedelics, showing that Americans on both sides of the aisle, regardless of who they voted for at the top of the ticket, are largely ready to rethink the country’s past prohibitionist approach to drugs, and specifically marijuana.
Once New Jersey, Arizona, South Dakota, and Montana’s new adult-use laws go into effect, roughly one-third of the country’s population will live in a state where cannabis is legal.
Victories in traditionally conservative parts of the country like Arizona, South Dakota, and Montana prove that legalization of cannabis has bi-partisan support. Up until now, it has been an issue that Republicans, and particularly the Senate has run away from. These results may encourage more of them to embrace the movement towards legalization.
Here are more details of what happened on Election Day in regards to cannabis legalization:
Voters in the Garden State overwhelmingly approved a measure to legalize marijuana for recreational use. The state legislature still will need to pass legislation to set up regulations for the program, but that is expected to happen rather quickly.
Traditionally conservative Montana approved a measure to legalize marijuana for adult use while also simultaneously passing a constitutional amendment restricting participation in the market to those 21 and older.
Voters passed an initiative to legalize recreational marijuana use for adults 21 and older. Voters in Arizona rejected a similar measure in 2016. Just another sign of the growing support for legalization across the country.
The new law will allow adults to possess up to an ounce of marijuana at a time and grow up to six plants for personal use.
Voters passed a constitutional amendment allowing for recreational marijuana use and will allow people 21 and older to possess and distribute up to one ounce of marijuana. They will also be able to cultivate up to three cannabis plants.
On Tuesday, South Dakota became the first state to go from strictly prohibitionist to legalizing both medical and recreational marijuana.
Facing obstacles at every turn, activists finally saw their reform approved by voters allowing for medical marijuana use in Mississippi. The measure allows for use for 22 qualifying conditions such as cancer and PTSD.
The record turnouts, close presidential contest, congressional races that are still being tallied because they are so close, and upcoming recounts and legal challenges show that the country may not have a clear opinion on the direction we should go in the future.
When it comes to marijuana and drug policy, that is not the case. The voters have sent a clear message that legalization and decriminalization are the inevitable path we are on.