Alaska's marijuana legalization is coming to vote for a second time this decade in the 2014 elections. The initiative, Measure 2, would make recreational marijuana legal for adults and regulate it similar to alcohol.
[Update: Only 36 percent of precincts in Alaska have checked in, but so far 52.3 percent of voters have voted in favor of passing Measure 2 and 47.1 percent voted against. It is very close and as the numbers have been coming in it has been shifting to more voting no on 2. ]
In a related report by The Inquisitr,Florida's marijuana legalization effort went to pot in the final 2014 elections results. Although Amendment 2 supporters vow to try again during the 2016 election, Oregon's marijuana legalization results had the entire state buzzing.
Alaska's ballot Measure 2 is the northern state's initiative to legalize marijuana. If Measure 2 is passed, it would remove state legal penalties for possession of up to one ounce of marijuana by adults 21 and older and establish a regulatory framework for licensed businesses to cultivate and sell marijuana to adults, similar to the laws enacted in Colorado and Washington state.
Medical marijuana is already legal in Alaska, though the state has seen previous efforts to legalize recreational pot fail. Even though recreational marijuana would be legalized at the state level it would still remain a federal crime, according to BallotPedia.
Polls have yielded very mixed results, but pro-legalization High Times is predicting that Measure 2 will fail at 49 percent. They pointed out that three polls show a decline in support since May, coming in at 48 percent, 44 percent, and 43 percent support and 45 percent, 49 percent, and 53 percent opposed. One poll showing 57 percent to 39 percent was criticized for the phrasing of its question to include the term "constitutional rights" that opponents said skewed the answers.
"It's a very polarized race," Ivan Moore, an Anchorage pollster, reported Yahoo News. "Young people like it and old people don't. And the trouble for the 'yes' side is that old people vote and young people don't." To counter that paradigm, the "yes" side is spending lots of money. In Alaska, supporters of Measure 2 have raised more than $890,000.
Leading up to the 2014 election there has much controversy over marijuana legalization. According to anti-legalization group Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) co-founder Kevin Sabet, "Legalization in practice will always be the biggest enemy of legalization."
Colorado and Washington are looked as examples for life in the state after legalization. Calvina Fay, executive director of the Drug Free America Foundation, claims marijuana legalization in Colorado caused "an increase in car crashes, DUIs, and fatal slip-and-fall accidents." Nora Volkow is the head of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), and she claims that marijuana legalization could be more dangerous than already legal tobacco and alcohol.
With polls being mixed and groups on either side vying for victory, it could go either way. The results for Alaska's marijuana legalization in the 2014 election have yet to come in at the time of publishing. Despite predictions that Measure 2 will not pass, the results could possibly go the other way. The Inquisitr will update this article as soon as the results are known for certain.