OC & Riverside Democrats Struggle to Reverse California's Potpocalypse

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Jay Brockman
When it comes to mainstream American politics, usually it's the Libertarian Party that one would associate with a pro-marijuana (medical or otherwise) agenda, but now you can add the Democratic Party to that very brief list.

To wit: in Riverside, the very town whose fight over a local ban on marijuana dispensaries produced last week's California Supreme Court ruling saying all cities have the right to prohibit such clubs, activists are now struggling to reverse the anti-420 tide.

Trying to get Democrats to turn the anti-pot tide isn't going to be easy. According to Paul Lucas, a longtime OC Dem activist, he struggled to get the 35 signatures needed to form a California Democratic Central Committee Hemp and Cannabis Caucus, but was only able to garner 20 names. He credits Joe Shaw, a member of the Huntington Beach city council, with being the only elected official brave enough to add his name to the list.

Meanwhile, word comes today that the Riverside County Democratic Central Committee (RCDCC) is holding a meeting today to hear a proposed resolution calling for state lawmakers to enact regulations that would allow cannabis collectives to operate in California without fear of criminal or civil penalties.

"If the RCDCC passes the resolution, then we can get medical marijuana patents who are Democrats in other counties to take the resolution to their Democratic Central Committees and kick start the groundswell of support needed to get statewide regulations passed," says Lanny Swerdlow, a medical marijuana activist in Riverside, who announced the meeting in his Marijuana Anti-Prohibition Project (MAPP) newsletter.

"Getting the grassroots of the Democrat Party to support regulation would be a big boost in convincing Democratic legislators to vote for statewide regulations," Swerdlow argues. "With Democrats in super-majority control of the state legislature, their support is absolutely critical, but let's not write off Republican support either. A groundswell of support for statewide regulations might also convince some Republicans to realize that it would be in their re-election best interest to support statewide regulations too."

Swerdlow is hoping to get as many local medical marijuana activists as possible to show up to this evening's RCDCC meeting, which is scheduled to begin at 6:15 p.m. at Brandon's Diner, which is located at 24626 Sunnymead Blvd in Moreno Valley, CA 92553.

Let the anti-potpocalypse begin!

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5 comments
danmadrids
danmadrids

When the "clinics" opened.......I was amazed and in shock to see how many people were suffering unimaginable pain and suffering. All these poor, young, yet, healthy looking people brought lots of cash to the marijuana cartel, so called certifying "Dr's, cooperatives, Head shops and convenience stores.  The drug business is good business.

Mitchell_Young
Mitchell_Young topcommenter

Stoners are the new gays -- you all have 20-30 years of parade organizing, quilt making, and network TV show infiltrating before you are accepted. Of course, being stoners, that's a tall order.

elduce
elduce

I wonder if all those shops who lobbied patients to vote against prop 19 are happy now.....

paullucas714
paullucas714 topcommenter

Nich,

Thanks for the write up. The initiation of the Caucus was don e with too small of a window of time to do it effectively.  There just wanst enough time to recruit Delegates. Little known is that the caucus needs a minimum of 35 delegates to the state party which are ADEMS. This is a small population to work with in the outset. Add to that the proclivity of Democrats to squishy on these types of  issues because mostly of ignorance as well as the avoidance of looking soft on crime as well as the loss of an easy population to use as a whipping post. Take Lou Correa for example, the Highest off ice holding Democrat in OC. His foisting of SB 289 was a direct attack on Cannabis patients at the behest of Prison Guard and Police employee unions to keep the gravy train rolling of prisoners and asset forfeitures of  one of the most vulnerable populations in the state, seriously ill patients who cannot fight back.I worked very hard to get Dems in OC to sign up for the caucus but was only able to overcome only a few minds from that blatant prejudice against cannabis users.

As a contingency we will be forming the Brownie Mary Democratic Club. This is a chartered club in the Democratic Party on par with groups such as the California Young Democrats. This club will be able o raise and spend money as well as endorse and aid candidates in elections. Sans total decriminalization and regulation, we will be at the forefront of this movement until we achieve such in the state of California., and then we will switch to national.

paullucas714
paullucas714 topcommenter

@elduce  

El duce you got a point there.  Chickens coming home to roost.

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