The letter was released by The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, the principal group supporting Amendment 64, the marijuana legalization ballot initiative being put before voters this November. The law would permit adults over the age of 21 to possess one ounce of marijuana or six marijuana plants. It does not propose any any changes that would affect employee drug testing or laws prohibiting driving while intoxicated.
Most of the letter’s co-signers identified themselves as coming from “the fields of law, health, economics, and criminal justice.”
“For decades, our country has pursued a policy of marijuana prohibition that has been just as ineffective and wasteful as alcohol prohibition,” they wrote. “We have reviewed Amendment 64 and concluded that it presents an effective, responsible, and much-needed new approach for Colorado and the nation.”
President Obama, meanwhile, is due to make a stop at Colorado State University on Tuesday afternoon as part of a three-state campaign swing focusing on college campuses right at the start of a new school year. He’s expected to reiterate his support for freezing student loan interest rates and attack Mitt Romney for saying that hopeful students should just borrow money from their parents or join the military.
The president has consistently said he opposes to marijuana legalization, and his administration has been adamant about prosecuting hundreds of licensed marijuana vendors in states that have legalized the drug for medical use.
“The State of Colorado, as well as our nation, have successfully walked the path from prohibition to regulation in the past,” the professors concluded. “Eighty years ago, Colorado voters approved a ballot initiative to repeal alcohol prohibition at the state level, which was followed by repeal at the federal level. This year, we have the opportunity to do the same thing with marijuana and once again lead the nation toward more sensible, evidence-based laws and policies.”
An August survey by the Democratic-affiliated Public Policy Polling group found that 47 percent of Colorado voters favor Amendment 64, while just 38 percent oppose it.