Thursday, September 30, 2010

A Week of Cannabis Coverage in the Commonwealth


Contributed by Steven S. Epstein, Esq. steve@masscann.org

Although we cannot find it reported anywhere else:

In the race to fill Richard Tisei’s vacated Middlesex - Essex Senate seat:

Democratic state Senate candidate Katherine Clark [http://katherineclark.org/] pounced on her Republican opponent Craig Spadafora [http://www.spadafora4senate.com/] saying at Wednesday night's debate [http://melrose.patch.com/articles/clark-spadafora-debate-wednesday-night] (9/22) he would support the legalization of marijuana and not tax it, sending out a press release on Thursday with comments from the Melrose and Wakefield police chiefs condemning Spadafora's stance.

The Melrose Patch [http://melrose.patch.com/articles/clark-slams-spadafora-over-legalized-marijuana-support] , September 24

The Cape Cod Times reported September 25 on the Public Policy Question on the ballot proposing legalization in Falmouth and the Islands in a story, Voters set to ponder legalized pot [http://www.capecodonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100925/NEWS/9250330] . According to the story, Rep. Matt Patrick, whose constituent’s are not being polled sits firmly on the fence.

On the North Shore the Salem News, in a story also picked up by its sister paper the Gloucester Times, reported on the Public Policy Questions on the Ballot in the Seventh and Eighth Essex District also proposing legalization. In Some approve of pot legalization for tax revenue [http://www.salemnews.com/local/x124777479/Some-approve-of-pot-legalization-for-tax-revenue] , Representative Keenan (D-Seventh Essex) is reported to favor medical use laws, but is opposed to legalization. Apparently the reporters were unable to reach incumbent Lori Ehrlich (D-Eighth Essex) or her Republican opponent Katherine Kozitka 

While, “Republican Sean Bielat and U.S. Rep. Barney Frank disagree on military spending, Bush-era tax cuts and the handling of the housing crisis, but they share an unusual area of agreement - the legalization of marijuana.”
TheSun-Chronicle [http://www.thesunchronicle.com/articles/2010/09/27/columns/7994872.txt] , Sept. 27 Reporting on the September 23 Nightside with Dan Rea Show on WBZ Radio.

September 28, theDaily Collegian [http://dailycollegian.com/2010/09/28/marijuana-legalization-proposition-to-come-on-election-day/] (UMass-Amherst) reported on the two public policy questions on the ballot for legalization in the 3rdHampshire and 1stFranklin House districts.

Meanwhile, many wicked local newspapers are republishing the Metrowest Daily News’Editorial of September 29 [http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/opinions/editorials/x399785283/Editorial-Marijuana-law-in-hands-of-voters] reflecting on California’s Question 19 which if it passes “if passed, will not just legalize marijuana possession, it will empower municipalities to regulate and tax it. The state Legislature won't be able to stop it. Any community looking to avoid a property tax hike could open up its own cannabis revenue stream.”

The same editorial closes by noting:


    Those questions are all non-binding, of course, and if past history holds, even the legislators in those districts will ignore the results. The Massachusetts Legislature has for many years refused to even discuss marijuana policy. Two years ago, voters took the issue out of the Legislature's hands, approving the decriminalizing of marijuana. Question 2 passed with 65 percent of the vote.


    If California leads the way, we wouldn't be surprised to see a binding legalization measure on the Massachusetts ballot in 2012.

Speaking of Question 19, the latest poll released Wednesday by the Public Policy Institute of California [http://www.ppic.org/content/pubs/survey/S_910MBS.pdf] shows Prop 19 ahead with 52% supporting it and 41% against it. The Field [http://www.field.com/fieldpollonline/subscribers/COI-2010-September-California-Marijuana-Law.pdf] poll released last weekend showed 50% support Prop 19.

You can check all the latest news and opinion Mass Cann collects by checking our website at:http://masscann.org/the-news/322-news-and-opinion-2010



A list of all the public policy questions concerning marijuana policy can be found at:
http://masscann.org/legal-reform/60-politics/356-how-we-are-doing-with-ppqs

*Note: MaMaMoJo has also published all the Massachusetts PPQs here: http://mamamojournal.blogspot.com/2010/09/hi-rachel-good-to-talk-to-you-this.html

**Mass Cann wishes all members of the media success in their pursuit of happiness this weekend and every day.


**MaMaMoJo seconds that emotion.
   Thanks, Steven S. Epstein, Esq, for contributing.


Massachusetts Cannabis Reform Coalition\NORML
A State Affiliate of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws
P.O. Box 0266, Georgetown, MA 01833-0366
781-944-2266 - http://www.masscann.org/


"We shall by and by want a world of hemp more for our own consumption."
John Adams as Humphrey Ploughjogger, 1763
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