As the date for signatures to be turned in for the Arizona campaigns hoping to legalize marijuana for adult use draws nearer, one of the two campaigns has decided to drop out. However, the reasoning behind it is not quite as simple as one would think. The group, Arizonans for Mindful Regulation, has decided to end its petition gathering efforts – even though some petitioners wanted to continue until the deadline.
Those running the campaign have decided not to continue for the 2016 elections, promising that they will be back in full swing in 2018 – but for now they intend to focus their efforts on a Vote No campaign to hopefully put an end to a competition campaign, the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana like Alcohol in Arizona. Last year, the two initiatives were actually the same – but Medar and the rest of the AZFMR group decided to split off from the group backed by Marijuana Policy Project because they believed the initiative was not permissive enough.
Changes between the two initiatives include the number of dispensaries that would be allowed within the state, which the CRMLA initiative allows 150 or so and the AZFMR initiative would allow around 1500. The AZFMR wording also does not put a cap on the amount of cannabis that can be grown in a residential home and would reduce penalties for black market cannabis dealers. They have gone as far as to call the CRMLA initiative “fake legalization”.
One question that comes up when a campaign like this drops out – especially when they drop out to oppose a similar campaign – is where are all the donation funds going? Obviously, there will be a number of people who don’t want to see their previous donation towards legalization to now go towards ending it until a certain initiative has the chance to pass. The group has at least made it clear that donations will be kept completely separate – and they are taking new donations for the new campaign.
“If you previously made a financial contribution to our ‘Campaign to Legalize Marijuana,’ that money stays with THAT Campaign,” the message reads. “If you want to make a financial contribution to the Vote NO Campaign, you will need to make a new contribution.”
While having only one question on the ballot will be better for the chances of the CRMLA initiative passing this fall, the fact that another campaign is fighting against them is a little discouraging. Even if there are differences – it would be better to come together as one group to fight for the cause, rather than leading separate campaigns and lowering your chances of passing a successful initiative.
Disgusting group. Utter stupidity to think AZ will have another shot at passing this if we dont get in this year. This is our shot. It perfectly aligned to maybe make it possible. Yet these nuts want to throw a fit because they cant grow a farm of weed in the basement. Good thing AZ residents see right through these frauds. Going against a bill that would serve 99% of people very well. A giant step for a state like AZ.
Chris, you are wrong. MPP only protects the big $$ interest dispensary owners & backers. Did nyou read the comparison chart that shows how weak the CRLA thing is?
You like the MPP halo around their supporters dispensaries that gives home growers the finger? All that does is insure the big $$ peeps have a captive market & will keep the black market thriving. I bet the drug cartels love MPP.