Ohio voters rejected a ballot measure that would have made the state the pioneer in making both recreational and medical marijuana use legal in one single vote.
While majority of voters would have voted for legalization, they did otherwise to show their strongest objection against billionaires prowling to monopolize the supposed business in legal cannabis.
The Ohio voters rejected Issue 3 on Tuesday’s ballot that would have allowed adults aged 21 and above to use, purchase and grow allowable amounts of cannabis. At the same time, the yes votes would have allowed 10 farms to monopolize the business of growing and planting marijuana. Hence, voters approved Issue 2, a measure to prevent monopolies from being included in state constitution.
Speaking with The Associated Press, Marty Dvorchak spoke of the general thinking that the Ohio voters while placing their ballots. “I can’t believe I voted ‘no’ when it was finally on the ballot. I think it’s ridiculous that marijuana is illegal. The war on drugs has been a failure. But I don’t think 10 people (growers) should have a monopoly,” Dvorchak told AP.
According to the Washington Post, the owner of the ten farms has 24 investors that include former 98 Degrees member Nick Lachey, descendants of former president William Howard Taft and NBA star Oscar Robertson. If Ohio voters said yes to Issue 3, these individuals would have earned estimated revenue of $1 billion a year.
Ian James, a political consultant who headed the “ResponsibleOhio” legalization campaign admitted in the past that he was actively campaigning because he could profit from it. “The honest and most easy response is: I am going to profit from this. If people are upset about me making money, I don’t know what to say other than that that’s part of the American process. To win and make this kind of change for social justice, it does cost a lot of money,” James was quoted as saying by the Los Angeles Times.