On November 3, 2015, the voters in the State of Ohio voted against Issue 3 for the legalization of recreational and medicinal marijuana. In the past three years, the states of Colorado, Alaska, Oregon, Washington and the District of Columbia have all passed the legalization of recreational marijuana. The vast majority of these states started by legalizing medicinal marijuana. Although the parties in Ohio responsible for bringing this vote were extremely sophisticated and created a remarkable marketing and public relations campaign, I believe that the initiative fell short due to their aggressive nature of attempting to create a monopoly and also requesting legalization of medicinal and recreational at the same time.
Those who are in support of the legalization of marijuana should look
to the States of Colorado and Washington and learn from the mistakes that
were made. If the State of Ohio hopes to one day pass a recreational marijuana
law, they should start with a medicinal marijuana law controlled by the
State. They should also leave out any monopoly that could be created on
this issue. Due to the upcoming presidential election, there will be a
significant amount of voter turnout in 2016. The proponents for the legalization
of marijuana should realize that the vast majority of the additional turnout
on a presidential election will vote for legalization and should turn
their attention to passing legislation in the 2016 race.
Our Firm is able to help those groups strategize and advise on the past
experiences in the States of Colorado and Washington and facilitate a
transition to the legalization of medicinal and recreational marijuana
in the State of Ohio. For additional information, please contact us at