Stark Says Toke Up, California!

PROP. 19 ISSUE MAY BRING OUT YOUNG, PROGRESSIVE VOTERS IN NOVEMBER
Rep. Pete Stark is backing Proposition 19, the November ballot initiative legalizing marijuana in California, according to a report in The Huffington Post.

The site says Stark along with Bay Area legislators Reps. Barbara Lee and George Miller will support the measure sure to be a lightning rod for national debate.

The article speculates whether the drive to legalize marijuana may also be used to stoke young Progressives to vote in droves and allow Democrats like Attorney General Jerry Brown and Sen. Barbara Boxer to ride the wave to victory similar to the Rovian gambit in 2004 used to encourage conservatives to the voting booth with various anti-gay measures.

A RAND study published Wednesday said marijuana prices would drop precipitously if the initiatives is passed along with a rise in consumption, which is not surprising based on the precepts of supply and demand. The study also took aim at the main focus of Prop. 19–the ability of the state and local municipalities to regulate marijuana sales through taxes. The study speculates some operators may undermine loopholes in the proposed law to avoid  taxation or, at the very least, lower their share. Also not surprising since a majority of Corporate America avoids paying their share of taxes anyway.

-STEVEN TAVARES
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