The petition will be promoted on the Just Say Now website, in addition to being circulated virtually by Firedoglake to those on its email list and its readers.
|Aaron Houston, SSDP: “This is really going to be a force in changing marijuana laws”
SSDP will be doing the same thing physically through their chapters at university campuses across the country, according to Executive Director Aaron Houston.
“We are absolutely thrilled to be woirking with Firedoglake, a stalwart in the online organizing community,” Houston said Tuesday. “This is really going to be a force in changing marijuana laws.”
Marijuana is not quite the taboo subject it was just a few years ago, according to Houston.
“People from all over the political spectrum are beginning to talk about this issue, and are talking about it in a very serious way,” Houston said. “I served as as marijuana lobbyist on the Hill for seven years, and finally people are beginning to believe it is safe to talk about this issue.”
According to Houston, which political party will benefit from the “marijuana vote” has yet to be determined, and the outcome depends on the parties themselves.
“If the Republicans are smart enough to pick it up, it’s going to be good for them,” Houston said “If the Democrats are smart enough to pick it up, it’ll be good for them.”
“It’s a win-win-win political issue, and it’s probably the biggest sleeper issue out there,” Houston said.
The campaign aims to organize support from across the political spectrum for ending marijuana prohibition in the United States. It will combine the online organizing efforts of Firedoglake, which has 100,000 readers a day, with the grassroots organizing acumen of SSDP
, which has chapters at 150 campuses.
“It is very important to us that this is not viewed as a partisan issue, because we don’t think that it is,” Hamsher said in a Tuesday conference call with the press.
According to Hamsher, the campaign will work to turn out voters supporting marijuana initiatives on this year’s ballot in Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon, and South Dakota.
Beyond 2010, Just Say Now
will work to get marijuana initiatives on the ballot in multiple states in 2012, with an emphasis on presidential battleground states, with the goal of encouraging a national conversation about marijuana policy during the next election.
Just Say Now will be launching an online phone banking effort in the coming weeks. Using the phone bank, people can call and help identify supporters in states where marijuana legislation appears on the ballot this year: Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon and South Dakota.
The information gathered through phone calls will be used to help turn out voters in these five states on Election Day in November.
The Just Say Now campaign advisory board
is made up of people from across the ideological spectrum who share the goal of a more sane and rational marijuana policy, with an emphasis on those with experience in law enforcement and the justice system.
“In order to encourage the national conversation, we will be booking our advisory board members for media appearances as well as working with Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) to make their national network of law enforcement speakers available for media and speaking engagements,” Hamsher said.
All proceeds will be used to support campaign organizing efforts on campuses and online to end marijuana prohibition.