Voters In Oregon, Alaska, Washington D.C. Legalize Marijuana

Break out the celebratory brownies: Alaska, Oregon and D.C. are joining the ranks Washington State and Colorado, after residents had their say in last night’s vote and legalized marijuana where they live, in varying degrees.

So what exactly does that mean? In Alaska and Oregon, voters passed measures that will usher in a legal recreational pot industry much like those in Washington State and Colorado, with retail pot shops and legal consumption for adults, reports Reuters.

And on the less free-ranging side, the proposal that passed in D.C. will make marijuana possession legal, but does not allow for retail sales in the district. Still, it could chill things out a bit around town.

All of this has happened even while marijuana remains technically illegal under federal law.

Oregon’s law will take effect in July 2015, with stores opening possibly by the next year. In Alaska,
The Oregon law, which drew 54 percent support in preliminary returns, takes effect in July 2015 and stores could open the following year.

“In 2016 we’re going to push the ball forward in several states until we end prohibition,” Leland Berger, a Portland attorney who helped write the new law, told Reuters.

The Alaska measure still needs official approval, after which a regulatory body has nine months to draw up rules, with stores heading to the state sometime in 2016.

“Marijuana prohibition has been an abject failure, and Alaska voters said enough is enough,” said Chris Rempert, political director of the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana like Alcohol, in a statement.

Voters OK legal marijuana in Oregon, Alaska, and Washington, D.C [Reuters]

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