The California Democratic Party passed into history not one, but two resolutions on the issue of marijuana at its Executive Board meeting in Costa Mesa on Sunday, July 21. These are now official positions of the party and add another level of mainstream approval for medical marijuana and marijuana law reform - approval that will hold us in especially good stead when speaking with Democratic elected officials and candidates
The first resolution called on President Obama to (1) respect the voters of Colorado and Washington and to not allow any federal interference in the enactment of their marijuana legalization initiatives, (2) end the federal raids on patients and providers in medical marijuana states and (3) appoint a commission to look into the reform of our nation’s marijuana laws.
The 2nd resolution calls on our state legislature to enact statewide guidelines for medical marijuana distribution that respects the rights of local municipalities to regulate and license but will also provide marijuana “to all patients in all areas of California, rural as well as urban.”
It has now been almost nine months since the voters of Colorado and Washington changed the course of history by passing the world’s first two marijuana legalization measures. Although repeatedly asked by the media what the Obama Administration’s actions will be regarding these initiatives, Attorney General Eric Holder has repeatedly stated that information will be released soon.
Soon has still not come and this resolution will help in continuing to make it later rather than sooner as the Obama Administration is under enormous pressure from local, state, national and international police agencies to torpedo Colorado and Washington’s marijuana legalization initiatives. Other that the polls showing the majority of American’s want marijuana to be legalized, there has been pitiful little pressure applied from organized groups to counter the police pressure. This resolution puts the California Democratic Party, the largest state Democratic Party in the nation, firmly on the side of giving President Obama the backbone to allow Colorado and Washington go ahead and tryout marijuana legalization.
Now along with the Conference of Mayors that asked the President to end federal interference in a state’s medical marijuana program, the California State Democratic Party has also requested the President to end the raids. This is the kind of political pressure that can have results not just on the President but also on elected representatives to the U.S. Congress who are voting on a number marijuana law reform measures that address the problems caused by the differences in state and federal law.
The 2nd resolution aligns the Democratic Party with the bills now under consideration in the state legislature. The voting on these bills is going to be close and the endorsement by the Democratic Party of statewide regulation guidelines for cities and counties could help get a few of the wavering Democrats on our side.
Both of these resolutions were sponsored by the Brownie Mary Democratic Club of Riverside County and were endorsed by the Riverside County Democratic Party and several other Democratic clubs and organizations. The enactment by the California Democratic Party helps grow the mainstream support for marijuana law reform. It is the perfect example of how working the grassroots for marijuana law reform can grow into statewide and eventually national support.
Although I wrote the resolutions, they would have gone nowhere without the support of many other people. The turnout of Brownie Mary Democratic Club members and other advocates at the Riverside County Democratic Central Committee meetings was instrumental in getting their endorsement. Getting it to the State Convention and Executive Board and eventually passed took the help of many Democratic activists throughout the state. This is called networking and shows that the political process will work for us when we work within the political process.
Over 80 resolutions were considered and marijuana was not a contentious issue. The most contentious issue was oysters. It is fun to note that when the chair mistakenly said the medical marijuana distribution issue had been pulled for discussion, it was quickly pointed out that his eyes had dropped a line as it was the resolution just below the marijuana resolution that had been pulled for discussion. Everyone roared with laughter when he asked “is the resolution on medical marijuana distribution also being pulled” and the two hundred plus Executive Board members shouted out “NO!”
This is how medical marijuana patients’ right can be protected and marijuana prohibition can be brought to an end. The successful passage of these two resolutions speaks well of the growing political clout of our communities, but it will grow even more with your support. For more information on the Brownie Mary Democratic Club and how you can get involved in the political process and make a difference that really does make a difference, CLICK HERE.