Maine Voters Approved Recreational Pot, but the Governor is Fighting
Gov. Paul LaPage doing everything to stop legal weed in Maine
It’s official: recreational marijuana is legal in Maine, it was confirmed December 21, following a recount request by an anti-pot group. 
The recount was requested by the state’s “No on One” campaign, named after the ballot measure, Question 1. Ballots from 42 municipalities within the state were recounted, representing approximately 30% of the total votes.
Voters passed the measure November 8 with a margin of 4,073 votes in favor of legalizing the recreational use of marijuana. The recount confirmed the vote, though by a smaller margin: 3,995 votes.
The outcome means that adults 21 and older will be able to legally grow, possess, and use marijuana for recreational purposes, likely within weeks.
Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap has certified the vote and passed it along to Gov. Paul LePage for his signature.
Great. End of story.
Shady Voters? More Like a Shady Leader
The way these things usually work is the governor signs the proclamation to make it official, but LePage says he is seeking legal advice concerning whether doing so would violate his oath to uphold the Constitution. 
LePage originally said his beef is that marijuana is still illegal at the federal level, so he’s concerned about signing a Maine law which is contrary to federal law.
Then, on Dec. 22, LePage changed his tune when he told a local radio station that his main concern was illegal voting, and said that he would ask Dunlap to investigate and make sure there was no shady voting going on.
Dunlap wasn’t happy with LePage’s allegation, and said that Maine’s elections have been shown to be clean. New voters provided the appropriate identification, everyone all the requirements, and voter fraud was non-existent.
Dunlap says it doesn’t matter, though – it’s going to happen with or without LePage’s John Hancock (signature).
Besides, according to University of Maine Law School Emeritus Professor Orlando Delogu, when it comes to the Constitution, LePage doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Delogu said:
“He has a propensity to suggest he has more powers than he has from time to time, and I think he needs to have it called to his attention that just as legislatures have limited powers, governor’s offices have limited powers.” 
That There is the Devil’s Lettuce
Here’s a few doozies from LaPage on marijuana:
- “Marijuana kills people on the highways. Traffic deaths in Colorado have increased dramatically.” – Hmm, nope. Actually, they’ve decreased. 
- “People addicted to marijuana are three times more likely to be addicted to heroin. Heroin is already killing seven Mainers a week. We do not need to legalize another drug that could lead to more deaths.” – Yeah, uh, no. Even U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch admits marijuana isn’t a gateway drug. The real gateway drug is alcohol. In fact, marijuana shows promise in helping drug addicts get off hardcore substances.
- “People will smoke marijuana in pot stores right next to schools, daycare centers, and churches. They will smoke weed and sell pot at state fairs.” – This is totally illegal. Public consumption of marijuana is not permitted under Maine’s pot law.
Paul LaPage is a man with very set, very incorrect views on marijuana. It seems that his concerns about voter fraud and the Constitution are just veiled attempts to get his way.
Julie Fidler has written hundreds of articles on key world topics such as health, drugs, and law. She is also the author of Adventures in Holy Matrimony: For Better or the Absolute Worst. Oh, and she loves to take care of two ridiculously- spoiled cats in her free time.