Assemblymember Catharine Baker

ASSEMBLY | 16TH DISTRICT | East Bay Assemblymember Catharine Baker says she opposes the “Adult Use of Marijuana Act,” the state ballot initiative to legalize cannabis in California.

Baker, an East Bay Republican legislator representing suburban areas from Walnut Creek to Pleasanton, announced her opposition to the initiative, known as Proposition 64, in a tweet Friday afternoon.

Although, the bid to legalize cannabis in the state, according to polling, is likely to succeed next November, Baker’s opposition is centered around the perceived danger to children posed by legalization. In the tweet, Baker said, “Let’s send the right message to our kids and oppose Prop. 64.”

Baker’s stance on cannabis will likely become an election issue. She is being challenged by Democrat Cheryl Cook-Kallio, a former Pleasanton councilmember. Last June Baker topped Cook-Kallio by six points, setting up a competitive and likely expensive campaign this fall.

Cook-Kallio’s stance on cannabis is not clear. Her campaign has not yet responded for comment on its stance on Proposition 64. During a different era, Cook-Kallio voted against allowing medical cannabis dispensaries in Pleasanton as a councilmember in 2007.

As opposed to other assembly districts in the East Bay, possessing a moderate stance toward cannabis is not necessarily a negative.

In fact, the district is the only state legislative seat represented by a Republican and its political makeup is dominated by moderates (23 percent) and a a higher percentage of registered Republicans (32 percent) than any other area in the East Bay. Democrats represent 39 percent of the electorate.