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October 28, 2009

California moving on various fronts toward possible legalization of marijuana

This New York Times article, headlined "Push to Legalize Marijuana Gains Ground in California," reports on the latest counter-insurgency in the war on drugs.  Here are some details from the start of the article:

These are heady times for advocates of legalized marijuana in California — and only in small part because of the newly relaxed approach of the federal government toward medical marijuana.

State lawmakers are holding a hearing on Wednesday on the effects of a bill that would legalize, tax and regulate the drug — in what would be the first such law in the United States. Tax officials estimate the legislation could bring the struggling state about $1.4 billion a year, and though the bill’s fate in the Legislature is uncertain, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Republican, has indicated he would be open to a “robust debate” on the issue.

California voters are also taking up legalization. Three separate initiatives are being circulated for signatures to appear on the ballot next year, all of which would permit adults to possess marijuana for personal use and allow local governments to tax it. Even opponents of legalization suggest that an initiative is likely to qualify for a statewide vote.

“All of us in the movement have had the feeling that we’ve been running into the wind for years,” said James P. Gray, a retired judge in Orange County who has been outspoken in support of legalization. “Now we sense we are running with the wind.”

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October 28, 2009 at 08:49 AM | Permalink

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Comments

Legalize, regulate, tax, and educate. Just like alcohol and cigarettes. I vote YES. Coward or fool that I am, I haven't had a joint in 35 years (since becoming a member of the bar); I can hardly wait!!

Posted by: Michael R. Levine | Oct 28, 2009 2:09:00 PM

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