Despite their loss at the polls last week, marijuana legalization advocates in California are already working on their comeback plan for 2012 and are almost giddy about their prospects, says the Los Angeles Times. They see the election as a trial run that could lead to a campaign with a better message, a tighter measure, and more money. Both the winning and losing sides say California’s voters rejected this specific initiative, but remain open to legalizing the easily obtainable drug.
The proponents have a huge head start compared to where they were two years ago. Then, regulating and taxing marijuana was the dream of a handful of Oakland activists. Now, the campaign has a broader base of supporters, including labor and civil rights leaders. Big-money donors have shown a keen interest. And the state’s electorate and media have seriously debated the issue. In addition, the presidential election is expected to draw far more young voters to the polls. If they had shown up Tuesday, Proposition 19 might have come close to passing. Legalization outpolled major Republican candidates Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina.