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Rerun reeferendum

Written By: - Date published: 3:46 pm, November 6th, 2020 - 33 comments
Categories: Politics, referendum - Tags:

One of the other results from the final results on was the reeferendum. The loss was minuscule in the final results.

Cannabis race tightened

While the non-binding referendum on legalising recreational cannabis was still lost on the final count, the margin tightened markedly after counting of special votes.

Some 50.7 percent of voters in the cannabis referendum opposed legalisation while 48.4 percent supported the proposition. That compares with election night totals of 53 percent against and 46 percent in support.

The result in the end of life referendum barely changed, with 65.2 percent support for the proposal, compared with 65.1 percent on election night.

Pattrick Smellie @ BusinessDesk : Labour tightens grip, Māori Party gets second seat (paywalled)

So instead of a rejection of 7%, there was instead just a loss by 2.3%. At that kind of level there really doesn’t need to be a process of educating much. I’d lay that down mostly to complacence by the vote Yes campaign. Perhaps they should lay off the weed for a while so they could concentrate more of campaigning rather than leaving it to ‘everybody knows’.

Reducing the Cannabis Legislation and Control Bill down to something that is vaguely readable would help as well. I had problems scanning all 148 pages of it. Which was a bit of shock for me as I read history books and legislation for entertainment. First bit of legislation that has put me to sleep for a while.

There is no doubt in my mind that the No campaign was well organised, appeared to be well funded (and I wonder where that came from) and tended be quite misleading.

There have been people around me abusing cannabis in various forms for the last 46 years and my observation is that alcohol is far more dangerous in every possible way. People with existing problems have issues with cannabis use, the same as they do with all legal drugs.

If I was the yes campaign, I’d be considering pushing this through to another referendum as soon as possible. It was so close, that I’d put the result down to being run with Covid-19 in the background of the campaign.

For the record, I have no participation in the reeferendum apart from voting yes to it. I have partaken in cannabis once in my late teens and it screwed with my programming for 3 days after. I only take the pills that my quack foists on me, and I do partake in the odd beer, wine and Irish triple distilled whiskey.

33 comments on “Rerun reeferendum ”

  1. Beanbag 1

    I have no interest in cannabis personally apart from the perverse desire to grow some in the vegepod to piss off my mother in law, but I am gutted that NZ voted no in the referendum because then it opens the door to psychedelics to become legal. These show great promise with dealing with depression, ptsd and other similar problems.

    https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/newsroom/news-releases/psychedelic-treatment-with-psilocybin-relieves-major-depression-study-shows?fbclid=IwAR0b3fstDQygJ_K2hjZK3rD11-XiRmkxCJmYEZnp483TMUAt8oUE8xcQE2o

  2. Tiger Mountain 2

    The end of life Referendum had a consistent parliamentarian, Mr Seymour, enthusiastic about its passage, the Cannabis L&C Bill had Ms Swarbrick as she was able to make the time.

    Andrew Little seemed to hang weed “out to dry” once the thing was set up as per the agreement with the Greens. The long time Cannabis advocates, and several newer ones like “Make it Legal” unlike the Nats and “Nopes” had rather diverse messaging, necessitated partly by the scope of the Bill I guess.

    But an opportunity lost, given the evidence available from longitudinal studies and overseas experience. It would be interesting to know if Nope funding was at all from the liquor industry or associates, and which branches of religious nutters.

    Definitely should be revisited promptly. Homosexual law reform, smoking in public places, Civil Unions, and other societal changes took several tries before succeeding.

  3. Dennis Frank 3

    I reckon there's no appetite out there for a re-run, but the referendum has been useful in showing us the lay of the land. Progressives are half the country, conservatives the other half, on the question. That balance is equal within the usual polling margin of error.

    Chris Fowlie didn't show up in the media during the campaign, as far as I could tell. He seems competent, but the campaign seemed more like a loose coalition of advocates than a professional operation.

    He reckons there's a basis for parliament to decriminalise cannabis now. I agree. Someone (Chloe, perhaps) ought to lobby the new justice minister (Faafoi) to organise it. Essential progress to make!

    https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2020/11/06/cannabis-referendum-final-result-and-opportunities-for-reform/

  4. Tricledrown 4

    A members bill could be pulled out of the ballot

  5. Forget now 5

    An imminent reeferendum might be useful in focusing the government's attention on preemptive decriminalization. The problem is that a quarter of the 48.4% would have to be willing to put their names down on official documents for that to happen without parliamentary leadership on the issue.

    "Anyone can start a petition to ask for a nationwide referendum, known as a ‘citizens initiated referendum’… you must get signatures in support of holding a referendum on your question from over 10% of eligible voters nationwide."

    https://www.parliament.nz/en/get-involved/have-your-say/seek-a-referendum/

    • Barfly 5.1

      An umbrella group would need to be organised to develop plans /strategies funding etc

      Only the nay side had significant organisation in the last referendum.

      • Patricia Bremner 5.1.1

        Give a little Page? I'd donate.

      • Forget now 5.1.2

        An umbrella group would be a good idea, Barfly. NORML or the ALCP probably as starting base, but hopefully bringing in others (especially medical experts) to broaden the appeal.

        The timeline as I see it is; next election is due around September 2023; petition for reeferendum to be submitted up to a year before that; after a further year of getting and checking signatures; after 3months of question finalization. So 2 years & 10 months, to do something that'll take up to 25 months – leaving 7 months for prior organization. If no private member's bills are drafted and drawn first.

        It would certainly be better to have one coordinated effort than many different groups all submitting their own reeferendum wordings.

  6. Phillip ure 6

    The yes campaign..as in a vehicle to promote the health benefits..the economic benefits…the logic of legalisation…and addressing/refuting the lies peddled by the no campaign..was nowhere to be seen/heard …who was the spokesperson/face of the campaign..I saw/heard nobody…all I heard was those lies being peddled by the no campaign…and the 'weed is much stronger now days!'-bullshit peddled by gower… The yes campaign has set a new benchmark in incompetence/inattention….w.t.f. were they doing..?…they clearly couldn’t organise a ‘burn’ in a pot-factory..

  7. weka 7

    I've seen criticism of the Yes campaign, but how much of this was just about covid and people being exhausted. I was really aware of how few posts we put up on TS during the election campaign compared to other years.

  8. Nathan 8

    As I stated this time last week, an very large amount of voters (1.2 million Kiwis) voted for both Labour, and yes for cannabis.

    If the Labour MPs — do nothing on the Cannabis laws– they should expect to be voted out in 2030…

    Those 1.2 million vote should not be ignored…

  9. Bazza64 9

    Final result much closer than anyone thought, the special votes were skewed far more to the yes vote than anyone thought.

    Jacinda’s comments tonight indicated that Labour wouldn’t be revisiting this again in the near future, probably as they need to focus on more important issues for the moment.

    So the Electric Puha stays illegal for the time being.

    Watched a tv documentary (60 minutes or 20/20) that talked to weed growers in California where it has been legalised. Most of the growers preferred to sell the stuff illegally out of state rather than deal with the legal hassles, council consents, water rights, etc. The weed growers are the laidback type, enjoying living off the grid & the cost to sell the stuff legally meant they couldn’t make any decent $. So it seems for a lot of them they were happy to sell the stuff illegally & make better $, which you can’t blame them for.

  10. Bazza64 10

    Heard a story years ago about how weed can mess with some people’s heads. A guy gave up the weed as he had a good smoke before he went to a mate’s house.

    Knocked on the door & his mate opened the door & said “Gidday Andy, how’s it going? “

    Andy thought to himself “Shit, what does he mean by that ?”

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      Sounds like something somebody stupid made up.

    • weka 10.2

      paranoia is a well known side effect of cannabis, but it's not universal or permanent. Cannabis is a psychoactive substance, that's why people use it recreationally. The effects disappear when the high wears off. How that interacts with people's inherent mental health is a different thing, and needs more awareness. Hence the need to legalise, so people can learn how to use cannabis safely.

  11. NZJester 11

    Is it surprising there was a well funded no campaign.

    The yes vote would have seen control taken away from the gangs and put into the hand of the government and health professionals.

    To many people would loose their access to all the un-taxed cash they make from selling it to people of all ages and spiking it with something harder when they want to move them up to a higher class drug. The right would also loose there potential cash cow of tossing people into future private prisons for low level drug possession.

    Some of that dirty money would have been funneled into the No campaign.

    • Draco T Bastard 11.1

      exactly.

    • opium 11.2

      “spiking it with something harder when they want to move them up to a higher class drug”

      What utter nonsense.If people are lining up to buy silver why would you spike it with gold?

      • bob 11.2.1

        because "gold" is addictive – I point you to our meth problem, cheap to make, easy to produce and vastly more profitable

        giving away a free sample at the local tinnie house isn't uncommon – I'm not sure spiking is that common

    • Graeme 11.3

      Think we'll find that most of the money for the No campaign came from the alcohol and existing hospo trade who were explicitly excluded from the proposed legal cannabis trade.

      I think setting up a completely seperate industry was a mistake and there should have been some integration with the end result a recreational drug policy, not an alcohol policy and a seperate cannabis policy.

  12. Nathan 12

    Great comments to read..

    the real question is why is Labour following the National/Act policy towards Cannabis…

    Most of the yes vote, are also Labour votes…so ignore this fact at your peril Labour

    • ken 12.1

      I'm a solid Labour voter, but if they do nothing for the half of the country that voted Yes, I'll be supporting the Greens in future.

    • Chris 12.2

      Perhaps, but even if passed there's still a lot of people opposed, which in turn translates to a lot of people potentially annoyed who'd then vote the current government out in 2023. It's a very emotive issue. What that means is that by making the legalisation of pot a priority the government's sacrificed other important matters like housing and poverty. There are plenty of other ways the government can deal with problems around pot being illegal. When the time's right, legalise, when the backlash isn't going to be so damaging. In the meantime, tell the cops to pull their heads in.

  13. Nathan 13

    Motto for 2030 Election

    No Cannabis = No Labour Vote

    1.45 million yes voters can change the Government

  14. Sacha 14

    Health policy should never have been a referendum in the first place. We elect politicians to do that policy work on our behalf. Lobby them to get on with it, by all means.

  15. Nathan 15

    Lobby or vote them out. Labour senior leadership knows what it is doing in the Cannabis issue.

    They (Labour) believes they get away with this. 1.45 million Kiwis voters can change the Government.

    • ken 15.1

      Agreed.

      Half the country have been labelled criminals by the other half of the country, and the "criminals" are Labour Green voters.

      We've shown loyalty to Labour, now it's time for them to return the favour.

      • Incognito 15.1.1

        Half the country have been labelled criminals by the other half of the country, and the “criminals” are Labour Green voters.

        Utter nonsense.

  16. Nathan 16

    I agree with you Ken.

    Labour decided not to use some political capital on this, despite knowing Labour/Green voters support this.

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