New Approach Washington unveiled new advertisements Wednesday that show former law enforcement officials supporting Initiative 502.
The ballot initiative would legalize the production and sale of marijuana in Washington state through state-licensed stores, if approved by voters in November. Under the proposed law, the Washington State Liquor Control Board would regulated marijuana-shops and possessing up to an ounce of marijuana would be legal.
“We know firsthand that decades of marijuana arrests have failed to reduce use and the drug cartels are pocketing all the profits,” says Charlie Mandigo, a former FBI special agent, in one of the ads.
“As the former chief federal prosecutor, I enforced our marijuana laws,” John McKay says in a second ad. “I’ve come to believe they don’t work. Filling our courts and jails has failed to reduce marijuana use. And drug cartels are pocketing all the profits. It’s time for a new approach.”
The Washington State Democratic Central Committee, the state-wide umbrella organization for the Democratic Party, has endorsed Initiative 502. In a resolution passed last year, the Democrats stated that “marijuana is Washington’s second biggest cash crop and could generate hundreds of millions of dollars in new tax revenues” and that outlawing the drug was “wasting millions of dollars.” The initiative is also supported by the NAACP, ACLU and a number of other organizations.
According to a new SurveyUSA poll for KING/5 News, the ballot initiative is supported by 57 percent of Washington voters, while 33 percent are opposed and 10 percent are undecided.
Watch the new ads below: