SACRAMENTO —Advocates of a ballot measure that would legalize recreational marijuana use in California announced Thursday that they have amassed an e-mail list of 70,000 supporters for the campaign.
Once the initiative is filed with the California Attorney General, ReformCA will work to gather the 365,000 signatures needed to put the measure on a statewide ballot during the November 2016 presidential election.
If the measure is approved by voters, California would join Colorado, Oregon and the District of Columbia which have legalized recreational marijuana use.
Those in favor contend that pot should be regulated similarly to alcohol with adults allowed to make personal choices regarding use, a move that could reduce prison populations and provide economic stimulus in the state. But opponents cite concerns over drug abuse and potential access by minors, as well as drugged drivers.
Though California voters have previously approve medical marijuana, a measure to extend legalization to recreational use went up in smoke in 2010 when voters rejected it.
But now 55% of likely voters say that support legalization, according to a poll by Public Policy Institute, the San Jose Mercury News reports.
ReformCA has hired Joe Trippi, who gained fame for attracting broad grassroots support for Vermont Governor Howard Dean’s presidential campaign, to mobilize online support and donations for the “grass” roots initiative campaign.
This article is reprinted from East County Magazine which, along with The Moderate Voice, is a member of the San Diego Online News Association.