A potential La Crosse County advisory referendum on legalizing marijuana appears to be part of a larger shift in the dialogue about the drug in Wisconsin.
That’s how the rep. from the regional chapter of National Association for Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) sees that and other similar measures around the state.
Jay Selthofner says referendums on the ballot would be useful polling for lawmakers. The ballot initiatives could drive state lawmakers to more seriously consider legalization when they return to work after elections this year.
“That would give our incoming lawmakers additional info — which would include basically the public polling on the referendum — that would hopefully advance the issue when it comes to the next state legislation cycle,” he said.
Several counties in Wisconsin could have referendums for legalizing marijuana on the ballot this fall including La Crosse, Rock, Brown, Dane, Winnebago, Racine and Marathon.
Selthofner says public polling on the issue clearly indicates a shift in perception on marijuana and legalization, he says, appears inevitable.
“It’s leaning towards public opinion of polls just keep gaining traction and more and more people are supporting this,” he said..
Selthofner says outcome of the advisory referendums will depend largely on how the measures are worded on the ballot. Milwaukee County has already voted to have a legalization measure on the ballot.