Marijuana Legalized in Massachusetts; Question 4 Passes

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Marijuana will soon be fully legal in Massachusetts, subjecting it to taxes and rules similar to those that currently apply to alcohol, after Ballot Question 4 passed Tuesday night, according to preliminary election results.

The ballot battle was called shortly before midnight, with 66 percent of state results recorded. The “Yes on 4” pro-legalization campaign stood at 53.3 percent of the vote, while the opposition had 46.7 percent.

The measure saw staunch opposition from state lawmakers, including Gov. Charlie Baker, as well as law enforcement officials, concerned about whether the state was ready to enforce the proposed legalization. Their voices appear to have been drowned out by the voters, according to preliminary results.

A similar initiative is on the ballot in four other states. Proponents hope to ride the wave of presidential turnout to victory.

Gov. Baker released a statement on Question 4’s passage around midnight:

“Lt. Governor Polito and I are proud to have worked with an unprecedented bipartisan coalition that has voiced concerns with this proposal, and our administration will work closely with lawmakers, educators, and public safety and public health professionals to ensure this transition protects the interests of our communities and families.”

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