Election 2020: All you need to know about cannabis legalization on the ballot
This page was updated on Oct. 14, 2020.
Election 2020: Legalization on the ballot
A total of 35 states now allow medical marijuana. Of those, 11 states plus Washington, D.C. have also legalized cannabis for adults 21 and older. Here’s our map of which states are legal, featured in Leafy’s 2020 Jobs Count.
When is the election?
The general election is Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020.
How do I vote?
- Use Headcount’s Cannabis Voter Project to register to vote.
- Voter registration deadlines vary by state, and voting method. Do not delay.
What am I voting on?
The next president of the United States. Also drug legalization measures in 7 states; 33 US Senate seats; all 435 seats in the House of Representatives; 11 state governors; thousands of state senators and representatives; and many local city and county council races.
Which 6 states are voting on legalization measures on Nov. 3?
Four states are voting on adult-use (recreational) cannabis legalization: Arizona, Montana, New Jersey, and South Dakota.
Two states are voting on medical marijuana legalization: Mississippi, and South Dakota.
Oregon voters will consider two separate drug reform measures. One would legalize the medical use of psilocybin. The other would decriminalize small amounts of all drugs.
Full voter guides to all 6 legalization states
Leafly’s news team has created a fully reported guide to each state’s legalization measures, which are updated as new information arrives. Link to a specific state below:
Legalization on 2020 state ballots
|State||Rec or Medical||Measure name||Advocates||Opponents|
|Arizona||Recreational||Proposition 207||Smart & Safe Arizona||Arizonans for Health and Public Safety|
|Montana||Recreational||I-190 and CI-118||New Approach Montana||Wrong for Montana|
|Mississippians for Compassionate Care||None yet|
|New Jersey||Recreational||Public Question 1||NJ Can 2020||Don't Let NJ Go To Pot|
|Oregon||Legalize the regulated medical use of psilocybin||Measure 109||Yes on 109||None yet|
|Oregon||Decriminalize all drugs||Measure 110||Yes on 110||No on Measure 110|
|South Dakota||Recreational||Amendment A||South Dakotans for Better Marijuana Laws||No Way on Amendment A|
|South Dakota||Medical||IM 26||South Dakotans for Better Marijuana Laws||No Way on Amendment A|
The latest election news
Oct. 14 — Recent polls in New Jersey and Arizona put legalization measures in the lead with less than three weeks until election day. Leafly has the full story.
What’s at stake, overall?
Everything for cannabis: Federal and state adult-use cannabis legalization; medical cannabis policy reform; state-level legalization; as well the state and local leaders who will implement or block reform. To give an example, about 79,000 votes in three states decided the 2016 presidential election. By contrast, 100 million eligible voters did not vote in that election.
Who should I vote for?
- It’s up to you. Read Leafly’s guides below, and other groups’ endorsements. Ask local and state candidates where they stand on legalization, and legal stores.
- NORML recently graded governors on cannabis policy.
- The Cannabis Voter Project tallies how members of Congress have voted on cannabis.
Biden vs. Trump: Where they stand on cannabis
Joe Biden was an original drug warrior in the 1990s. His position has changed since then, but not by much. He’s now in favor of ‘decriminalization,’ not legalization.
- Joe Biden’s drug war record is so much worse than you think
- Few impressed with Biden’s weak new marijuana decriminalization plan
- Former drug warrior Biden unveils cannabis decriminalization plan
- Biden pledges tepid support for cannabis half-measure
In his public statements, President Trump has been characteristically vague about cannabis legalization. But his administration’s actions have made it absolutely clear that the Trump White House wants nothing to do with legalization.
Here’s a selection of our coverage:
- Why is Trump targeting medical marijuana in an election year?
- Time to admit it: Trump opposes cannabis legalization
- Pro-cannabis Trump voters feeling betrayed
- Trump tariffs leading to shoddier, pricier vape carts
- Could Trump pull a ‘cannabis surprise’ in 2020? It’s not impossible
- Sessions rescinds Cole Memo, which protected state-legal cannabis from feds
Where the also-rans stand
- Pete Buttigieg wants to end the war on weed—but not in South Bend
- Mayor Pete gets schooled at a ‘tidy’ Las Vegas cannabis grow
- Where presidential candidate Amy Klobuchar stands on marijuana (via Marijuana Moment)
- Is Bernie Sanders still ahead of the curve on cannabis?
- Bernie says he’d legalize cannabis through executive order
- Bernie Sanders co-sponsors the Marijuana Justice Act
- How Elizabeth Warren became a cannabis champion without ever getting high
- Here’s what’s in Elizabeth Warren’s legalization plan