Ian James Calls Marijuana Mascot a 'Big Mistake,' Promises Free Market Legalization Plan

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The Issue 3 brain trust has hit the drawing board once again in hopes of tossing a more palatable marijuana legalization initiative to voters in some future election. For now, it's a licking-the-wounds process: identifying what went wrong and how to refocus.

Ian James, ResponsibleOhio executive director, shared his thoughts yesterday. Of note, he mentioned that the group's kind bud mascot, "Buddie," really did them in.

We trusted the voters throughout the process and we maintain our trust in the voters today. They have made clear that we made two big mistakes - by self-selecting limited grow site opportunities and making Buddie the face of the campaign.

I mean, I guess.

(Remember that ResponsibleOhio fired the woman inside the Buddie costume after she expressed some security-related "concerns," for whatever that's worth.)

The rest of James' statement sort of just reiterates the same claims ResponsibleOhio was peddling throughout the campaign (i.e. prohibition spurs a dangerous secondary market, taxes are nice, etc.). 

From there, though, a hint at what lies ahead:

Our next plan will include a free market for people to own and operate their own grow, manufacturing and retail facilities. The plan will ensure that the industry is treated like other businesses in regards to taxation. We will have a new approach to home grow without permitting and inclusion of growing hemp to provide opportunities for Ohio’s farmers.

We also have to continue pursuing the Fresh Start Act because Ohioans with the unfair, minor infractions associated with marijuana don't deserve to be shackled to their past.



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