— by NormanB (“Deviations from the Norm”)
As California, Oregon, and  South Dakota voters rejected Marijuana Legalization in landslides, and Arizona voters in a squeaker, Massachusetts constituents overwhelmingly voted to instruct our representatives to Legalize Marijuana. Here in Amherst, our landslide was three-to-one in favor of Legalizing, Taxing and Regulating Marijuana “Like Alcohol.” More than 74% of Amherst voters checked Yes. Statewide, Marijuana Legalization swept All Districts wherein we placed it on the ballot.
To illustrate how this affects our Reps, we need look no further than our own State Rep Ellen Story. She’s an 18-year incumbent who was re-elected, to her 10th term, in a resounding victory over my fellow Cannabis Reform Coalition activist, Independent Dan Melick, and Republican Dan Sandell. Story is a progressive Democrat. We in the CRC have been trying to get her to support Legalization for years; CRC activist Terry Franklin ran against her a few years ago. In the debate, knowing how Dan Melick felt, and fully aware of how Amherst was likely to vote on the Marijuana Public Policy Question, both Ellen Story and Dan Sandell came out for full Legalization.
It is possible or likely that Republican Dan Sandell already supported Legalization, since his fliers brag that he has been to shows of the Grateful Dead, Phish, and Rage Against the Machine. This was a Republican able to challenge Story, who usually runs unopposed, especially by Republicans – in our area, Greens, Libertarians, Independents, Socialists, and members of other Parties have made runs when Republicans didn’t. Story carried 77% of the vote, Sandell 19%, and Dan Melick 4%; but it was Dan Melick’s activism on Legalizing Marijuana that forced Ellen, a far-Left Democrat, over to our side of the issue.
As of 10:05am EST today, last time the state web page was updated, Palmer is the only town to have rejected the Ballot Question, by a vote of 51.7% to 48.3%. But Palmer was unsuccessful in attempting to instruct its Rep to vote it down, because its 1st Hampton State House District voted in a 54.5%-45.5% landslide to Legalize Medical Marijuana. Boston’s vote hasn’t been officially posted yet, nor that of Gosnold nor Walpole. In addition, Norton is currently reporting that its voting is over, but no one voted on that Question, which seems incorrect.
Below are links to the official State Webpage.
Tax & Regulate Ganja ‘Like Alcohol’
Legalize Medical Marijuana