"Western and northeastern states have led the way on legalizing marijuana, but the victory in MI powerfully demonstrates the national reach of this movement", said Maria McFarland Sánchez-Moreno, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, in a statement.
North Dakota's Measure 3, which would have made it legal for anyone over the age of 21 to use the drug, was losing by a margin of 60 percent to 40 percent with 357 out of 424 precincts reporting, according to the secretary of state's website. Before Tuesday's vote 20 of the 50 states allow it for medical use.
MI is going to have the first legal recreational marijuana in the Midwest.
Healthy and Productive Michigan said in a statement Tuesday night that "our side lost" the measure that if approved will make the state the first in the Midwest to legalize its sale and use. Following in Colorado's footsteps, the proposal will allow adults 21 and over to purchase and possess weed, and will tax cannabis products. And while a majority of legal states only allow the cultivation of six cannabis plants per individual, MI will allow 12.
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MI is significantly less restrictive than other states with legalized weed - while most others only allow residents to possess up to one ounce of bud, MI residents will be allowed to hold up to 2.5 ounces.
Matthew Abel, an attorney with the Cannabis Counsel in Detroit, says there is still work to be done on marijuana laws in the state. Amendment two passed. That allows doctors to prescribe medical cannabis to patients.
Voters in Utah and Missouri will consider whether to approve the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes. Canada last month became the first industrialized country to legalize recreational cannabis. On a more municipal level, voters in various cities across OH weighed questions related to decriminalization and minimizing punishments so that possession is treated like a traffic ticket instead of a misdemeanor.