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February 20th, 2013 WW Staff | Featured Stories
 

Puff, Puff

What will it take for Oregon to finally pass legal marijuana?

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“One reason Measure 80 didn’t pass in Oregon is that the big boys back East who put money into campaigns—Peter Lewis and George Soros—the organizations they help fund aren’t particularly fond of Paul Stanford [who backed Oregon’s last marijuana-legalization measure]. Those guys didn’t put money into Measure 80 because they don’t like Paul Stanford. That’s really unfortunate. I like Paul. If they had the million dollars, it would have passed. It only lost by 3 percent.” —Philip Dawdy, spokesman for the Washington Cannabis Association and former WW reporter


“The people who are most active at the national level are quite persuasive in making the argument that it’s better in 2016, and it’s better if people really have a chance to put together a proposal that reflects what Oregon wants and needs. If we have a second unsuccessful proposal, that’s going to muddy the waters and set it back. If instead, we really do it right in Oregon, and it’s timed with California, I think it’s an absolute game-changer. Not just a game-changer—it’s almost game over.” —Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.)


“We’re going forward for 2014. [Pro-pot billionaire] Peter Lewis’ associates are at the table with us. We’re conducting polling for six different ballot models. We’d make the cannabis commission governor-appointed. We’ll set a limit on personal and private possession, just as we do people who brew alcohol and things like that.” —Paul Stanford, author of 2012’s failed Measure 80


“It turns out that when it comes to proposals to either decriminalize or legalize marijuana, the details matter. And there were some pretty substantial differences in the actual details of the measures seen in Colorado and Washington. Voters do check details.” —Mark Wiener, political strategist


“We’ve been doing this since 1934, and if you look historically, I imagine a lot of the same questions came up back then. In fact, we have a document called the Knox Act. That was a study the governor at the time commissioned to figure out, if we legalize alcohol in Oregon, what form would it take? You could probably do a comparison about what people were thinking in the 1930s about legalizing alcohol, and compare that to what people might be thinking about legalizing marijuana.” —Christie Scott, spokeswoman, Oregon Liquor Control Commission


“Oregonians are, by and large, ready to legalize marijuana, so long as it is done in a thoughtful and responsible manner. But when you suggest legalizing as much marijuana as you like anywhere you like for any reason you like, when you suggest completely unregulated hemp while defining all seeds and starts as hemp, when you suggest the government oversight of marijuana ought to be chosen from the overseen, as legalizers did in 2012, you snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.” —“Radical” Russ Belville, host of 420radio.org’s The Russ Belville Show 

 
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