New Approach Oregon turned in 145,000 raw signatures to get ballot access

It is now almost guaranteed that Oregon will vote on marijuana legalization this November. As of Thursday, the New Approach Oregon campaign turned in roughly 145,000 raw signatures to get their initiative on the ballot. Only 87,213 valid signatures are required, so the campaign has likely exceeded that threshold.

“We are very excited that the support of Oregonians has been so tremendous to end treating marijuana use as a crime.” Anthony Johnson, co-author of the initiative, told me. “We will fight for every vote and we are confident a majority of voters are willing to consider regulating marijuana like beer and wine to better prioritize law enforcement resources.”

The campaign specifically selected June 26th to deliver its final batch of signatures because it marks the six-month anniversary since the adult-use marijuana regulations went into effect in Colorado.

The fact that other parts of the marijuana reform movement want to associate themselves with what is happening in Colorado and hold it up as an example shows how happy the movement is with how thing have been going in this first state. There is a strong sense of many in the movement that the most pessimistic critics of that law have been proven wrong.

This means Oregon will likely be the only other state to join Alaska this year on voting on taxing and regulating marijuana. The legalization initiative in Alaska was officially placed on the November ballot there months ago.

Jon Walker is the author of After Legalization: Understanding the future of marijuana policy