Prop 19 Reax I

It's a double-digit loss. Kevin D. Williamson sighs:

You'd think a state that just reelected Jerry Brown would be ready to go in whole-hog on the pot-legalization thing, but, no. [...] So California can go scraping around looking for money to interdict, try and lock up a bunch of harmless marijuana smokers, and continue for the indefinite future to needlessly impose politics on what should be a private matter.

Matt Welch seethes:

Prop. 19 loses, but it's the beginning of the End. No one really believes that evil bullshit anymore. If you do, proclaim it now, or STFU.

Josh Harkinson reports on how organizers took the news:

As 4:20 faded into the late afternoon, it became clear that Prop 19 was headed for a defeat. Even so, pot activists still had reason enough to party. Their campaign has taken the legalization debate mainstream, and they'll all probably try again in 2012. They gathered in a parking lot outside of Oaksterdam University, the cannabis cultivation school owned by Richard Lee, Prop 19's biggest financial backer. Pot smoke occasionally wafted through the air, and there wasn't a cop in sight who gave a damn.

An anonymous commenter at the Sacramento Bee:

ALL the dispensaries that were against Prop 19 have been noted, and they will suffer the consequences. You can't advocate the persecution of your customers for having the product YOU sold them, and get away with it. You folks better look for another line of work. And they will definitely be neutralized, one way or the other, before the 2012 election, when we will win.

Commenter Ryan at the LA Times:

Any smart marijuana smoker would vote no on 19. By legalizing marijuana the prices would only escalate by the government. Therefore, underground dealers will also raise their prices. Paying more for the same stuff except it's legal. Citizens would rather take the risk then spend more.

Another anonymous commenter, this one at LA Weekly:

It's ridiculous in these cash strapped times, people and government continue to endorse and spend millions fighting a failed, I repeat failed, drug war, which is largely focused on cannabis; when instead they could regulate it, create millions, even billions over time, selling a product which is far less harmful than the alcoholic beverages they market and practically shove down Americans throats. Instead of government regulation and taxation, we have apparently chosen continued cartel profits, unregulated sales to minors, sustained a black market which is beyond control, and continued jailing of otherwise innocent citizens. Prop 19 wasn't perfect, but it made a hell of a lot more sense than continuing our present state of affairs.