Legal pot backers in Ore. look to the future, national discussion
EUGENE, Ore. - Measure 80, the legalization of marijuana for recreational use, didn't pass in Oregon - but supporters say it's not the end.
"Marijuana prohibition is going to end, the only question is when," says Measure 80 supporter James Greig.
Smoking marijuana for medicinal reasons became legal in the state of Oregon in 1998 and Measure 80 would have taken the law a step further.
Although the law fell short in here in Oregon, similar bills passed in Washington and Colorado. Many think those states will set the tone.
"I hope it stimulates a conversation at the national level," adds Greig.
With Washington voting to legalize marijuana, the day when Oregonians can take a short trip north on Interstate 5 to get marijuana legally is not so far away.
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So what does law enforcement think about that?
"It may or may not bring more into the state or not. It doesn't really matter to us, we are just going to continue to do what we've been doing," say Sgt. Alan Gilbert with Oregon State Police.
That means enforcing the law.
"You can not possess it. Depending on the amount, where its less than an ounce, it's a violation or it's more than an ounce, which becomes a crime. We are going to enforce it just like we have in the past," adds Sgt. Gilbert.