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Marijuana Legalization Efforts Fail in California, Thanks to The Feds

Category: Legalization | Posted on Tue, April, 24th 2012 by THCFinder
Few successful political movements count their finest hours a loss. Yet 2010 will remain the high water mark of the marijuana legalization movement for at least another two years -- or longer, if the federal situation worsens.
 
Buoyed by Oaksterdam University founder Richard Lee's cash and energy, Proposition 19 -- which would have legalized possession of up to an ounce of pot for adults 21 and over, and allowed cultivation of small gardens -- lost in November 2010. It garnered a historic 4.6 million votes, or 46.2 percent of ballots cast. Following the loss, Lee declared on election night that legalization was inevitable, and that legalization would return in 2012 "stronger than ever" with a new ballot measure.
 
While Lee bowed out -- and the Prop. 19 redux committee instead focused on reforming medical marijuana -- the 2012 election cycle began with four competing legalization measures. 
 
But what was inevitable became official on Friday, when all committees missed the deadline to qualify their initiatives for the November ballot. 
 
So now we have to wait until 2014, and pray the movement finds a new leader -- and new benefactor.
 
To qualify for the ballot, would-be liberators of the magic plant needed to collect over 500,000 valid signatures and submit them to the Secretary of State by April 20 (yes, that April 20). 
 
Of the failed efforts, one -- Regulate Marijuana Like Wine -- came closest, according to proponent Steve Kubby, a South Lake Tahoe-based activist. That measure managed to collect about 200,000 signatures, Kubby said on Monday. Other efforts like Repeal Cannabis Prohibition, sponsored by a coterie of attorneys in Mendocino County and the Bay Area, waved the surrender flag much earlier. 
 
"We're full steam ahead for 2014," said Kubby. "Some of the funders are telling us that [donating then] won't be a problem."
 
As for Prop. 19's successor committee, it also withdrew its efforts well before the deadline. A bill sponsored by Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, (D-San Francisco) is nearly identical to that bill and is in committee in Sacramento.
 
So what killed the legalization movement? Money, mostly.
 

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