Missouri voters sanction recreational marijuana use, The fact that recreational marijuana was approved in Maryland and Missouri but rejected in two other states shows that support for legalization is gradually growing, even in conservative regions of the country.
As a result, marijuana is now legal for recreational use in 21 states. In the elections held on Tuesday, voters in North Dakota and Arkansas rejected legalization initiatives. In South Dakota, a similar initiative was on the ballot, but as of early Wednesday, it was too soon to predict the outcome.
According to a statement from Toi Hutchinson, president, and chief executive officer of the Marijuana Policy Project, “a growing number of voters recognize that cannabis policy reform is in the best interest of public health and safety, criminal justice reform, social equity, and personal freedom.” “State-level legalization victories are what is needed to move the needle at the federal level,” the author says.
Following President Joe Biden’s initiatives to decriminalize marijuana, the state voted. Last month, Biden declared he would pardon thousands of Americans found guilty of little more than simple marijuana possession under federal law.
According to proponents of the marijuana initiatives, Biden’s announcement might help their cause.
With the exception of selling to minors and driving while intoxicated, Missouri’s measure will legalize marijuana for recreational use for adults 21 and older and seal records of prior arrests and convictions for marijuana-related nonviolent offenses.
John Payne, who oversaw the Missouri campaign to decriminalize marijuana use, said, “It just shows that this is not a partisan issue.” “This transcends partisan lines,” the speaker said.
Payne predicted that Missouri recreational sales would begin early the following year.
The legalization in Missouri would be curtailed, according to opponents, who said they would work with local governments to forego allowing dispensaries.
Supporters stated that they intended to retry in Arkansas.
Robert McLarty, campaign director for Responsible Growth Arkansas, said, “Tonight, we made history by putting adult-use cannabis on the ballot for the first time. Although we fell short, we look forward to continuing this effort to build this momentum to 2024.”
After the proposal was turned down, David Owen, the man in charge of North Dakota’s legalization effort, said he wasn’t certain that another attempt would be made.
Even though tonight’s outcome was not what we had hoped for, Owen said, “the people have spoken, and now we must get ready for the next move.”
The proposal from North Dakota would have made it legal for adults over 21 to possess and grow small amounts of cannabis as well as use it at home. Additionally, it would have established rules governing marijuana retailers, growers, and other types of businesses.
According to Luke Niforatos, executive vice president of Smart Approaches to Marijuana, a Virginia-based political group opposed to marijuana legalization that assisted in fighting the measure in North Dakota, “it’s pretty clear North Dakota families don’t want marijuana across the state.”
South Dakotans, including a sizable proportion of Republicans, approved the legalization of marijuana possession in 2020, but the state Supreme Court overturned that decision in part because the proposal also included hemp and medical marijuana.
Voters in Colorado, where recreational marijuana use has been legal for almost ten years, approved a measure allowing the use of some psychedelic drugs on Tuesday. If accepted, Colorado would become the second state to do so. It was too early to declare a winner on Wednesday.
Republican voter in Little Rock, Arkansas, Melody Finley, said she supported the state’s legalization measure because she believed it could benefit some people with particular conditions.
The 47-year-old dance instructor Finley said, “If you can buy alcohol, you can buy that, too.”