California voters reject recreational marijuana bill
LOS ANGELES — California voters rejected a recreational marijuana legalization bill Wednesday, sending the measure back to the state’s nonpartisan Legislature.
The measure, which would have legalized recreational use of marijuana, had failed by a wide margin of 58 to 48 percent.
That’s the lowest margin since at least 1988.
Proponents of the measure said they wanted the measure to be seen as a step toward ending the war on drugs and to help those with mental illnesses.
The bill was supported by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, along with the Marijuana Policy Project, the California Nurses Association and the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.
The Assembly’s Democratic majority opposed the measure, and Democratic Governor Jerry Brown opposed it.
The measure is expected to fail.
The proposal would have allowed adults over the age of 21 to possess up to an ounce of marijuana and could have allowed those over the legal age to grow up to six marijuana plants at home.
The bill was approved by a margin of 53 to 47 percent, according to the Los Altos Times-Herald.
In a statement, Brown said the vote was not a result of a “political campaign.”
The governor said the measure would have created “serious, long-term problems” for children and would have “destroyed the safety net for those struggling with mental illness.”
The measure is opposed by the National Association of Drug Abuse Treatment Administrators, the Drug Policy Alliance, and several faith-based groups, among others.