Nov 4, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Voters approve marijuana legalization in 4 states

An election worker sorts submitted ballots at the Multnomah County Elections Office
An election worker sorts submitted ballots. Photo: Nathan Howard/Getty Images

Voters approved legalizing recreational marijuana use in several states, and Oregon decriminalized the possession of street drugs.

The big picture: New Jersey, Arizona, Montana and South Dakota will join the 11 states and D.C. that have already legalized cannabis for adult recreational use.

Why it matters: Legalization in additional states could be a big opportunity for the marijuana industry, and new tax revenue from potential sales could help states and cities balance budgets hit hard from the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Oregon legalized psychedelic mushrooms, and they were decriminalized in D.C.
  • Mississippi legalized marijuana for medical use, joining 33 states.

In addition, Oregon voters on Tuesday passed a measure to decriminalize the possession of street drugs and will no longer arrest or sentence those carrying small amounts of drugs like cocaine, heroin, oxycodone and methamphetamine.

  • The ballot Measure 110 will also direct millions of dollars in tax revenue for addiction treatment facilities and a state-supervised fund that will pay for drug programs, treatment and housing.
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