New Jersey voters will decide next year whether to legalize marijuana for adult recreational use.
Super-majorities in the state Senate and Assembly on Monday approved putting on the November 2020 ballot a question that if approved would make cannabis use legal in the Garden State for anyone over age 21.
In the Senate, it was passed by 24-16, exactly the number of votes required to constitute a three-fifths super-majority. The Assembly voted 49-23 with one abstention.
“We support any move beyond prohibition,” said Charlana McKeithen, executive director of Garden State NORML, part of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. “Now marijuana consumers and anyone who supports reform can cast a vote for freedom.”
The measure needs approval by Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy to go before the voters. Murphy ran on a platform that included legalizing marijuana.
“I’m pleased, but somewhat surprised” by the vote, said Scott Rudder, a former Republican assemblyman who is now president of the New Jersey CannaBusiness Association. “We’ve had 82 years of cannabis prohibition, so this was necessarily going to take time. We hoped it would get done through legislative process. That wasn’t in the cards. [Read more at The Philadelphia Inquirer]