Marijuana was a notable topic and trend for ballot measures in 2018.
In 2018, voters in two states—North Dakota and Michigan—decided citizen initiatives to legalize recreational marijuana. The measure was defeated in North Dakota and approved in Michigan.
In Oklahoma, State Question 788 legalizing medical marijuana was approved in June 2018. Utah and Missouri voters also decided initiatives concerning medical marijuana in November 2018. In Missouri, there were three different medical marijuana measures all competing with one another. All three states voting on medical marijuana legalization approved it.
So where can citizens put marijuana on the ballot in 2019 and 2020?
Ten of the states that allow citizen initiatives have legalized medical marijuana but have not legalized recreational marijuana. Recreational marijuana legalization measures have been proposed in Ohio for 2019 and Arizona for 2020. Both states have voted on recreational marijuana legalization initiatives in 2015 and 2016, respectively, but the initiatives were defeated.
24 states allow citizens to initiate legislation. As of November 2018, all such states had legalized medical marijuana or allowed cannabis oil except Idaho, Wyoming, South Dakota, Mississippi, and Nebraska. Medical marijuana legalization measures have been proposed for 2020 in South Dakota, Mississippi, and Nebraska.
In Florida, two 2020 initiatives were proposed to amend the state’s medical marijuana amendment that was passed in 2016. In Washington, a 2019 measure was proposed to ban Marijuana cultivation, processing, and sales in residential zones. Marijuana legalization could come through state legislatures in 2019 and 2020 as well. So far, Vermont is the only state that has legalized possession and use of recreational marijuana through a legislative bill rather than a citizen initiative.
At a glance
States with the initiative process that have legalized medical marijuana but not recreational marijuana:
- Arizona (Two different measures to legalize recreational proposed for 2020)
- North Dakota
- Ohio (Measure to legalize recreational proposed for 2019)
States with the initiative process that have not legalized either medical marijuana or recreational marijuana:
- Mississippi (One measure to legalize medical and one measure to legalize recreational and medical proposed for 2020)
- Nebraska (Measure to legalize recreational proposed for 2020)
- South Dakota (Measure to legalize recreational proposed for 2020)