PHOENIX — The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol (CRMLA) issued the following statement Tuesday regarding the narrow defeat of Prop. 205. Ballots are still being counted, but as of Tuesday at 8:10 a.m. the proposal to end marijuana prohibition in Arizona had received 1,158,655 votes in favor (48.23%) and 1,243,883 votes against (51.77%).
Statement from CRMLA Chairman J.P. Holyoak:
“We thank the more than 1 million Arizona voters who cast their ballots in favor of ending the failed policy of marijuana prohibition. We are disappointed the initiative came up short, but we are encouraged by the impressive amount of support it received given this was the first time voters had considered such a proposal. Marijuana has been illegal for decades, so we knew this was going to be an uphill battle. We ran a positive, fact-based campaign that fostered a much-needed public dialogue about this subject, and we are confident it will lend to positive change in the future.
“Sadly, adults in Arizona will continue to face felony charges for possessing small amounts of marijuana despite the fact that is less harmful than alcohol. Marijuana will continue to be sold in a criminal market where sales will generate millions of dollars each year for drug cartels instead of our schools. Fortunately, Arizona’s medical marijuana program remains strong and patients will be able to continue safely and legally obtaining marijuana through a regulated system.
“This year’s election did not close the book on marijuana prohibition in Arizona, but the writing on the wall could not be clearer. It is too soon to provide any specific details, but we intend to continue fighting in support of sensible marijuana policy reform. Thanks to the gains we made with the Prop. 205 campaign, we are confident that Arizona will be among the next round of states to end prohibition and start regulating marijuana like alcohol.”
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The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol is supporting Proposition 205, an initiative on the November 2016 ballot that would end marijuana prohibition in Arizona and replace it with a system in which marijuana is regulated and taxed like alcohol. For more information, visit http://www.RegulateMarijuana.org.
Barrett Marson, Communications Director