From Chris Good's reporting on the win for medical marijuana:
A big concern for medical marijuana advocates has been that it's hard to convince voters and state legislators to pass laws that they know the federal government will contradict. If medical marijuana users get arrested by the FBI and DEA, what's the point in legalizing medical pot at the state level? After the effort of putting a bill through the legislature or getting a measure put on the ballot, passage would seem like a pyrrhic victory.
So, with that in mind, Marijuana Policy Project Executive Director Rob Kampia, whose group drafted the Maine proposal that's now law, suggested the Obama administration's new policy had something to do with the vote: "Coming a decade after passage of Maine's original marijuana law, this is a huge sign that voters are comfortable with these laws, and also a sign that the recent change of policy from the Obama administration is having a major impact," he said.
Jacob Sullum has more details on the new law. Pot-shops in Maine is a big step forward to destigmatization.