Prop. 19 Increasingly Popular Among California Voters

  • by Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director September 30, 2010

    More than half of Californians now say that they will vote ‘yes’ this November on Proposition 19, which would legalize the private adult use and cultivation of limited amounts of cannabis, and allow local governments the option of regulating its commercial production and retail distribution.

    The latest poll of 2,004 likely voters throughout the state by the Public Policy Institute of California reports that 52 percent of Californians back Prop. 19, versus 41 percent opposed and seven percent undecided.

    Prop 19 is more popular than any candidate or incumbent

    Of the statewide propositions polled, only Prop. 19 possessed majority support among California voters. In fact, the same poll reports that a greater percentage of voters now back Prop. 19 than support incumbent Democrat Senators Barbara Boxer (42%) and Dianne Feinstein (44%), Senate Republican challenger Carly Fiorina (35%), Gubernatorial Democrat candidate Jerry Brown (37%) or Gubernatorial Republican candidate Meg Whitman (38%).

    Historically, ballot initiative campaigns lose support in the months prior to election day. But Prop. 19 is bucking this trend, as recent results from the Field Poll, Survey USA, and polltracker.com clearly show that marijuana legalization is maintaining, and in some cases gaining, voter support as we approach November 2, 2010.

    Proposition 19 is endorsed by a broad coalition of divergent and powerful interest groups, including the California NAACP; the Latino Voters League; the Service Employees International Union (SEIU); the National Black Police Association; the United Food and Commercial Workers, (UFCW) Western States Council; the California Council of Churches IMPACT; Firedog Lake; the California Green Party; and the Republican Liberty Caucus. These organizations, along with millions of Californians, agree that it is time to end criminal marijuana prohibition in California.

    If you live in California but are not registered to vote, you can do so by going here. Help make history on November 2!

    52 Responses to “Prop. 19 Increasingly Popular Among California Voters”

    1. John Smith says:

      All over the country, we are watching this unfold and hoping to see history in the making. The federal boys and many state governments are all about control, this will really buck that trend by making it clear that a MAJORITY of voters support this type of change.

    2. Cory says:

      Russ or Paul, I would highly appreciate a response to these questions, and thank you for your time in advance!

      Specifically, what do you all think will be the effects of legalizing Cannabis, as in, what sort of backlashes will we witness, especially at the federal level? Is it possible that some sort of massive scale DEA raids could take place in California, resulting in the incarceration of millions, if the Supreme Court ruled that Federal Law trumps state law when dealing with controlled substances? Or will we see something similar to the problem with lowering the drinking age, where the Feds will pull funding for something like highways if Cannabis is legal, in order to counteract the benefitting tax revenue that will come in as a result of Cannabis’s legalization? Also, what about all the weed that will then be sold from California to other states illegally? Will the Feds go crazy trying to stop that, therefore justifying any harsh punishments against California by claiming California is just a safety base for more illegal drug cartels selling to other states?

      Sorry for all the questions, but I think it’s important to look at what the results of legalizing Cannabis will be. Also, if I lived in California, I would definitely vote for Prop 19. I love the work you guys do! Thanks!

      [Paul Armentano responds: Nobody has a crystal ball. That said, I don’t foresee the DOJ interfering in the core rights granted under 19 to allow for private adult use and cultivation, just as the Feds have never challenged, for instance, Alaska’s similar court-ordered protections which have been in place since the late 1970s.]

    3. Buc says:

      Unlike most referendums, Proposition 19 has an obvious correct vote if people choose education and science over lies and propaganda.

    4. Chadwick says:

      (The above was assuming Prop 19 passes, of course)

    5. Chadwick says:

      Great news!

      Paul — What will NORML do to push the Ammiano Prop 19 implementation bill? When could that realistically pass? Could Gov. Schwarzenegger’s problems with the initiative get that bill passed?

      Also, if you’re kind enough to answer the above question, could you tell me if the Prop 19 implementation bill is opt-in by municipalities, or if it is opt-out?

      Thank you for all your hard work towards marijuana reform!

    6. Wow says:


      Literally tear down The Wall since Roger Waters is going to be in Cali after this hopefully passes!

    7. JAY says:

      Hey Nic #8&9 is that sweat on your brow? You must own a saloon.

    8. BoomerAnn says:

      I’m curious as to what people think the price will become once it’s legal from Prop 19. Right now it runs what, $13-20 a gram, depending on quality? Will that go DOWN when it’s legal, or UP?

    9. stompedonmyrights says:

      52 percent and CLIMBING! That 7% will be on board soon too. This vote in CA is historical and I just know when it is said and done it will have been a landslide vote No state in the Union will be able to ignor it. Go CA! Please with your votes you give hope to all of us who will be seeking it in our own States. You have shown us it can be done, that one can throw off ignorance and lies of the State, the Nation even. You are the Crack in the wall that will cause this Berlin Wall to come crashing down. Mr President tear down that Wall!

    10. Barb says:

      It makes me glad to hear that californians are getting involved in ending this injustice. Vote yes on prop 19 to end cannabis prohibition!

      FYI – It is UNconstitutional for the federal government to ban any products from US citizens. The FG has the right to control innerstate commerce but can not tell us what we can and can not have.

      ****** When the US had alcohol prohibition the FG had to write the 18th amendment to the constitution… no such amendment exists for cannabis!?!?!?!********

      [Russ responds: Please, spay and neuter your punctuation marks.

      SCOTUS has decided that interstate commerce applies to cannabis because banning marijuana is a function of controlling its interstate commerce. As in, “Our policy for regulating interstate commerce in cannabis is to forbid all of it.” Your possession of it prevents them from preventing you from selling it in an interstate market. Even if you never sell it on an interstate market. The possibility that you could and the impossibility of them knowing whether you did means your possession cannot be allowed.

      I know it makes my head hurt, too.

      Furthermore, in Raich v. Gonzales, it was argued that here was a woman with a brain tumor who legally grew pot in California under Prop 215, using California soil, water, and sunshine, for an obviously personal (medical) use, completely inside the state of California, with no buying or selling involved at any level. SCOTUS said, no, marijuana is “fungible”, looking back to Wickard v. Filburn, a case from the 1940s when we rationed wheat during WWII.

      A guy claimed he was growing wheat for his personal purposes, in state, never intending to sell it, so it shouldn’t be covered under the wheat rationing. SCOTUS said, no, wheat is “fungible”, you can’t tell personal wheat from commercial wheat, and since it is possible you could take personal wheat and sell it commercially and nobody would know the difference, you can’t have your personal wheat, even if you never actually sell it interstate. So, similarly, since marijuana is “fungible” – it’s not like interstate personal cannabis is red and medical cannabis is blue – you can’t have your own plant because there’d be no way for the feds to tell whether you diverted it to the black market or not.

      In essence, SCOTUS’ decision says you can’t have medical marijuana because it affects the feds right to ban marijuana – a decision that basically protects the interest of black market weed dealers. Weird, huh?

      See why it is so important for a state, especially the biggest most-politically powerful one, to say “Marijuana is LAWFUL”?]

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