California voters head to the polls today to decide the fate of Proposition 19, the most watched ballot initiative in the nation. Prop. 19 would legalize possession and cultivation of small amounts of marijuana by adults and allow cities and counties to regulate sales of marijuana within their jurisdictions. A win at the ballot would be a first of its kind in U.S. history.
“This is a watershed moment in the decades-long struggle to end failed marijuana prohibition policies in this country,” said Stephen Gutwillig, California director of the Drug Policy Alliance. “Regardless of the outcome, it is clear Prop. 19 has permanently impacted the national debate. That sound we’re hearing isn’t just millions of Californians casting ballots for reform. It’s the arrival of marijuana legalization squarely in the mainstream of American politics. The silence, and much of the giggling, has ended.”
“Prop 19 has both elevated and legitimized public discourse about marijuana and marijuana policy,” said Ethan Nadelmann, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance. “With millions of young voters saying that this is an issue that matters greatly to them, I look forward to future candidates for office vying to jump on this particular bandwagon. Demographics, economics and principle are all on our side.”
Drug Policy Alliance spokespeople are available to comment on Election Day and thereafter:
Ethan Nadelmann, Executive Director (New York City) 646-335-2240
Stephen Gutwillig, California director (Oakland and Los Angeles) 323-542-2606
Margaret Dooley-Sammuli, deputy state director in Southern California (San Diego) 213-291-4190