On Tuesday, voters in Ohio rejected a constitutional amendment that would have legalized both medical and recreational marijuana use. Naturally, folks are wondering about the implications of Issue 3’s failure for similar measures in other states.
But there’s a larger question as well. Could the defeat of Ohio’s Issue 3 influence marijuana policy at the federal level — for instance, efforts to eliminate federal felony charges for non-medical marijuana, or to influence related questions like DEA funding and drug sentencing guidelines, and so on.
Yes, it probably it will.
In 2011, Dan Smith, Josh Huder and I published an article in American Politics Research that explored whether the passage or failure of statewide ballot measures affects how members of Congress vote. In other words, do state ballot measures influence policy outcomes at the federal level? [Read more at The Washington Post]