MPP Launches Bus Ad Campaign in Alaska

The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol in Alaska has unveiled an ad blitz on buses to remind people to vote Yes on Measure 2. The MPP is funding the campaign to the tune of $350,000 so far.


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New Report Shows Marijuana Arrests Increasing

Dr. Jon Gettman

A report released today by Dr. Jon Gettman shows that despite increasing support for ending marijuana prohibition, arrests for possession are actually increasing in some states. The report and other information can be found on Dr. Gettman’s new site, RegulatingCannabis.com.

According to a blog by Paul Armentano at NORML:

From 2008 to 2012, seventeen state-level jurisdictions experienced an average annual increase in marijuana arrests, the report found. South Carolina (11.6 percent) and the District of Columbia (7.7 percent) experienced the highest overall percentage increase in arrests during this time period. By contrast, annual marijuana arrests fell nationwide by an average of 3.3 percent from 2008 to 2012.
Hopefully this will change as more states consider reforming their marijuana laws. The District of Columbia in particular should begin to see significant declines in marijuana arrests since a law removing criminal penalties for possession of up to one ounce went into effect on July 17.

Good News and Not-So-Good News in Maine

The good news: South Portland officials have informed us that we collected enough signatures to place an initiative on the November ballot that would make marijuana legal for adults. We also expect to qualify a similar measure in Lewiston next month.

The not-so-good (but not-too-bad) news: Getting on the ballot in York just got a little more difficult, and we need your help to do it. Last night, the town Board of Selectmen voted 3-2 against putting our measure on the ballot, which means we must collect 613 signatures within the next 30 days to get it on the November ballot.

There are two ways you can help us make this deadline:

1) Collect signatures — You don’t need to be a York resident to circulate a petition and putting in just a couple hours could make all the difference. Please contact Maine Political Director David Boyer at dboyer@mpp.org to get a petition.

2) DonateMake a financial contribution today to help us continue educating voters in all three cities about the benefits of ending marijuana prohibition.

Passing the initiatives in South Portland, Lewiston, and York will build the public support we need to legalize marijuana for adults at the state level in 2016. So, even if you don’t live in these cities, I hope you will join us in supporting these important campaigns.


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Campaign to Regulate Marijuana In Alaska Unveils New Bus Ads

The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol In Alaska unveiled a series of bus ads yesterday in Anchorage that highlight the relative safety of marijuana compared to alcohol. The ads, one of which is posted below, will appear throughout the week on city buses.

“Our laws should be based on facts, and it’s a fact that marijuana is far less harmful than alcohol,” said CRMLA Political Director Chris Rempert. “Countless government reports and scientific studies have concluded marijuana is less addictive than alcohol, less damaging to the body, and less likely to contribute to violent and reckless behavior. It is irrational to continue punishing adults for making the safer choice.”


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GOP Congressman Introduces CBD Oil Bill

GOP Congressman Scott Perry of Pennsylvania introduced a bill today that would make CBD oil legal under federal law.

Rep. Scott Perry

If passed, the “Charlotte’s Web Medical Hemp Act of 2014″ would allow states to permit patients suffering from epilepsy and related conditions to use an oil that is extremely low in THC but high in cannabidiol, or CBD. Under current federal law, any product made from marijuana is illegal.

It is great to see growing recognition of marijuana’s medical benefits, but this proposal would not help most of the seriously ill people who could benefit from them.


Seattle Hempfest

The 23rd edition of the world largest marijuana festival will feature six stages over three days, with bands, speakers and seminars, and an array of food and paraphernalia vendors.


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Sen. Rand Paul Proposes Amendment to Protect Marijuana Laws

Senator Rand Paul (R-KY)

On Thursday, Sen. Rand Paul proposed an amendment that would keep the federal government from prosecuting medical marijuana patients and physicians as well as interfering with states that implement medical marijuana laws, Huffington Post reports. The amendment was added to a jobs bill currently being heard on the Senate floor. Senator Paul’s communication director, Brian Darling, explained the senator’s move. “What we’re trying to do is look at the law and allow states that have changed their laws and have allowed medical marijuana to do so, for doctors to be able to prescribe and for people to be able to get those prescriptions without being worried about the federal government coming in and arresting them.”

Senator Paul has proposed similar legislation in the past, such as an amendment that would restrict the DEA and federal prosecutors from pursuing medical marijuana users and distributors that are in compliance with state law. “The effort before was to defund prosecutions — so it would block the federal government from prosecuting until that appropriations bill runs out about a year later.” Said Darling. The Senate is unlikely to vote on Senator Paul’s amendment due to gridlock, but Paul’s office has made it clear they are prepared to pursue similar legislation in the future.