Marjuana Reform Starts Early in Oregon’s Largest County

While the people of Oregon voted for marijuana legalization last week and the initiative won’t go into effect July 1st, already the district attorney of Multnomah County, the most populous in the state, is moving to respect the will of the electorate. From the Oregonian:

Oregon’s largest district attorney’s office announced Monday that it would dismiss pending cases involving violation-level marijuana possession in light of Measure 91’s statewide passage last week.

Multnomah County District Attorney Rod Underhill’s office released a statement to The Oregonian on Monday afternoon, saying prosecutors will dismiss a total of 50 pending marijuana cases. All involve marijuana-related activities that will be legal when the new law becomes effective for possession and cultivation July 1, 2015.

More politicians, police, and district attorneys all over Oregon, Washington D.C., and Alaska should follow suit. The public in these places made it clear that they don’t want law enforcement resources wasted on these marijuana issues and in a democracy it should be the job of government officials to follow the will of the people.

Hopefully, even officials outside these three jurisdictions that voted for legalization last week will also get the message. There are over a dozen states where the public has turned against the war on marijuana and the only reasons it is still criminalized in those state is because their politicians refuse to listen to the electorate, they lack a ballot initiative process, and/or reform groups haven’t yet run an initiative campaign but are planning to in the near future.

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