No California Pot Money For Washington Legalization Drive


Photo: Poto’s Blog
Grass will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no grass. But Washington’s weed warriors won’t have either, if they are depending on California

​Sensible Washington, the Washington state group trying to put a marijuana legalization initiative on November’s ballot, came back home empty-handed after a fundraising trip to California, according to an attorney who co-sponsors I-1068.

Among the marijuana luminaries in California who refused to contribute to Washington’s legalization effort were Richard Lee, arguably the most famous pot entrepreneur in the Golden State, reports Nina Shapiro at Seattle Weekly.
Seattle marijuana attorney Douglas Hiatt, who co-sponsors I-1068, Washington’s legalization initiative, said he and co-sponsor Vivian McPeak, director of Seattle Hempfest, met with Lee on their April fundraising trip to California.

Photo: Douglas Hiatt
Douglas Hiatt, I-1068: “We struck out”

​Lee, founder of Oakland’s Oaksterdam University and several other marijuana-related businesses, turned them down flat, according to Hiatt.
“I’m broke,” said Lee, who has already spent $1.3 million to successfully get a pot legalization initiative on the California ballot, as he refused to donate any cash for legalization in Washington.
According to Hiatt, he and McPeak met with several other people in California’s marijuana reform movement, including dispensary owners, politicians, and even three hip-hop producers.
“We struck out,” Hiatt said.
The Seattle attorney also got nowhere with the Drug Policy Alliance, a New York group working to end the War On Drugs, and came up similarly empty-handed with the Soros Foundation, which financially supports drug law reform through the Marijuana Policy Project and other groups.
While some said they were short on funds due to the slow economy, others opined that complete legalization as would happen under I-1068 didn’t have a chance.
“I just don’t think they’re interested in real reform,” Hiatt said.