In states like Kansas, illegal marijuana possession is at an all-time high (no pun intended). With the current success of pot legalization in states just like Colorado, progressives are more bothered than before with the distinct political gridlock in Washington and are planning a major ballot initiative to push across the country. They are relying on a very positive electorate in 2016, with a multitude of groups now assisting issues like background checks for firearms, improving the minimal income, and supporting marijuana legalization.
Organizations are now a lot more optimistic after the impressive results on progressive ballot initiatives presented to the conservative bloc of voters in 2014. In 2016, the more youthful, more liberal electors are anticipated to turn out in droves, and establish more major victories. Mandates like gun control, economic fairness issues (including paid sick leave and equal pay), and marijuana legalization are estimated to surpass those of 2012. This is an obvious sign that liberals are approving a state-based model that allows them to circumvent the legislature and Congress.
Conservatives are not taking this casually and are pledging to end the momentum with a set of competing ballot propositions. Nonetheless, pot legalization advocates’ tactic, is expected to perform quite efficiently, given the staggering demographic differences between midterm and presidential years.
“Especially with gridlock in Washington and fewer states likely to address the minimum salary legislatively, we’re likely to see more ballot initiatives on the minimum wage and other progressive economic issues,” announced Paul Sonn, general counsel at the National Employment Law Project, an organization that has assisted least income pushes across the U.S. Sonn’s statement reflects on the midterm election, where the GOP took back the Senate and made notable gains in the House. It was the smallest voter turnover since 1942, with much younger and minority voters making up a much smaller sized percent of the voting pool.
Things seem a lot more ideal now for progressives, as minimum-wage-hike success sweep across four hardened red states on November 4th– including, Arkansas, Alaska, Nebraska, and South Dakota. Sonn, on the other hand, feels great that the rise in economic ballot propositions will boost turnout more than in the last election phase. Even though Sonn can not confirm which new initiatives will be on the ballot, he did say that states like Colorado, New Mexico, Maine, Missouri, and Washington are places where gridlock makes ballot initiatives an appealing option.
According to professionals, compensated sick leave and equal pay propositions are also likely to be on the ballot in 2016. The senior vice president of the Center for American Progress, Arkadi Gerney, announced the latest trend in economic initiatives is mainly in response to the failings of Congress and state legislatures. They just have not handled the decades-long wage stagnancy.
Much more than a few marijuana legalization organizations are also preparing for the 2016 election in Arizona, Maine, California, Nevada, and Massachusetts. Heads of these groups also say they have a good shot at being on the ballot in Montana and Missouri, as well. They are hopeful due in part to the legalization of marijuana possession in Oregon and Alaska in 2014, and the legalization of the plant’s use and transfer in Washington, D.C. A constitutional amendment requiring a 60 % approval did fail in Florida, which would have permitted the use of medical marijuana, but it still pulled in a massive 58 percent of the vote.
The communications director for the Marijuana Policy Project, Mason Tvert, said the group’s forceful push is also as a result of the gridlock in state legislature, saying, “In the legislature, you can have a majority of elected officials in support, but it might be held up for five years due to one or two legislators, or a governor threatening a veto.”.
It’s real that the country seems to be to be more pro-pot as the years keep going, but these updated campaigns will not be won without a fight. 2012 brought success in states like Colorado and Washington (the first two states to legalize small marijuana possession), but there likewise were some substantial losses. These consist of the shameful loss for recreational marijuana legalization in the bluest parts of Oregon.
Anti-marijuana groups are said to be on the counteroffensive. “We are ramping up our efforts,” expressed Kevin Sabet, who co-founded the anti-legalization Project SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana) with former Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.). “It’s clear that we have a lot of work to do. I’m not looking at this with rose-colored glasses,” Sabet appended.
Still, he contended that a spending advantage was a fundamental cause for legalization successes. Anti-legalization advocates have badly outspent in both Oregon and Alaska this past cycle.
Sabet would not eliminate some anti-legalization ballot initiatives, either, including those that may probably tie state marijuana policy to federal policy, where halting prohibition will be much more challenging. “All options are on the table,” he claimed.
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