So maybe what has seemed the inexorable march toward the legalization of marijuana for both recreational and medical use has been slowed. Ohio voters turned down two (yes count them two) voter initiatives that would have legalized the use of marijuana in one of the country’s most diverse states.
In Ohio, which was weighing a series of ballot initiatives that could have paved the way to the legalization of recreational marijuana, voters turned down the measure, CNN projects. Issue 3 would have effectively given a few businessmen a monopoly on cultivating the drug, which would have been sold at a limited number of places for sale in the state.
Nick Lachey, the onetime lead singer of 98 Degrees, and other investors are behind ResponsibleOhio, the group that was pushing an initiative to legalize marijuana for recreational use in the Buckeye State.
The people of Ohio have understandably rejected a deeply flawed, monopolistic approach to marijuana reform that failed to garner broad support from advocates or industry leaders,” said one of those advocacy groups, The National Cannabis Industry Association. “This debate has shown that there is a strong base of support for legalizing, taxing, and regulating marijuana.”
The amendment would have permitted anyone 21 and older to hold up to an ounce of pot for personal use. With a $50 license, they could have housed eight ounces of harvested pot and four plants.
A National Pain Report source who has been tracking the support for the legalization of marijuana in California–the country’s largest and most diverse state– which is slated for the ballot in 2016, believes the Ohio vote is an aberration.The support for legalization in California is strong. Medical marijuana has been approved in California for two decades. The California Legislature just stiffened California’s medical marijuana laws. Laws passed this year to regulate the medical marijuana industry prohibit vertical integration of cannabis businesses.
If it passed, Ohio would have been the fifth state to legalize recreational marijuana. Two dozen states allow it for medicinal purposes.