The cannabis industry, along with activists and the community as a whole woke up to a new world on Wednesday, as five more states legalized cannabis during this year’s election. It’s an exciting time that bodes well for the ultimate goal of federal legalization and ending the War on Drugs.
Many of the industry hoi polloi made their thoughts known early on Wednesday morning. HEre’s a smattering of the best quotes about Tuesday’s results:
National Cannabis Industry Association
“During the most divisive election in modern U.S. history, Americans demonstrated unity around at least one issue - cannabis policy reform,” said Aaron Smith, co-founder and chief executive officer of the National Cannabis Industry Association. “These state-level victories will mean tens of thousands of fewer arrests and new jobs, much-needed tax revenue, and increased public safety. We look forward to building on this progress as we continue to work with Congress to end the conflict between outdated federal laws and the growing number of states with regulated cannabis markets, and help undo the racially and economically disparate harms caused by prohibition. There is still a lot of work to do, but the wind is at our backs.”
Vicente Sederberg LLP
"This was yet another historic election year for the cannabis policy reform movement,” said Vicente Sederberg Founding Partner Brian Vicente. “States in all four corners of the country voted to roll back failed prohibition policies and replace them with sensible laws that regulate cannabis similarly to other legal products. These new state laws will end the needless criminalization of countless individuals who use cannabis responsibly for medical, therapeutic or recreational purposes. These states will see significant economic benefits as the legal cannabis industry continues to expand and supplant the illicit market. The new business opportunities, job creation and tax revenue that accompany these news laws could not come at a better time, as states work to make up ground lost to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. This past decade, the movement to end cannabis prohibition has made historic strides forward every couple years — 2020 was no exception."
Don't Let NJ Go to Pot
"Now cannabis is going to appear in the New Jersey Constitution alongside the freedom to associate," said Gregg Edwards, executive director of Don't Let NJ Go to Pot, according to CNN. "And once it's in the Constitution, the likelihood of it coming out is slim or next to none."
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy
“We did it, New Jersey! Public Question #1 to legalize adult-use marijuana passed overwhelmingly tonight, a huge step forward for racial and social justice and our economy. Thank you to @NJCAN2020 and all the advocates for standing on the right side of history.”
Marijuana Policy Project
“It is great to see that the tides of change are continuing to flow across the country and now they have come to Mississippi,” said Steve Hawkins, executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project, in a statement. “As we saw in Utah in 2018, and as we see in Mississippi this year, medical marijuana can pass in any state in the country.”
Smart Approaches to Marijuana
“15 states legalized is far from 50,” Tweeted SAM Executive Director Kevin Sabet. “Elections come and go/ But whatever happens tonight (or next year or in 5 years), our work to keep the pot industry accountable keeps going-indeed it becomes more pressing/ We won’t ever stop fighting for public health over addiction-for-profit.”