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Marijuana Wins Big in the Midterms

Michigan, Missouri and Utah go legal, North Dakota goes illegal, and other big news from the election.


Republicans and Democrats weren't the only things on the ballot this election year. The fate of marijuana legalization in some states was also at play. So where did weed win and where was it defeated? Here's a quick look. 

Joseph Sohm |

Related: Will a Green Wave Overtake The Midterm Elections?


Michigan approves adult-use marijuana. Voters in Michigan made their state the first in the Midwest to allow the sale of cannabis to adults 21 and over. Michigan joins nine other states and Washington, D.C. in allowing some form of recreational cannabis

Missouri legalizes medical marijuana. With voters approving Amendment 2, Missouri became the latest state to legalize medical marijuana. The measure regulates the production and distribution of medical cannabis products to qualified patients. “This is a patient-centered proposal that puts power in the hands of state-licensed physicians and their patients, not politicians or bureaucrats," said Justin Strekal, NORML Political Director.

Utah legalizes medical marijuana. Although the Utah state legislature has already said it will rewrite Prop 2 once it succeeds at the ballot box, the voters have spoken. They want some more salt in their lake. 

Florida allows non-violent marijuana felons to vote. Voters amended the state constitution to allow voting privileges to those with non-violent felony convictions. Florida has one of the strictest laws against possession. Under state law, it's a felony to possess greater than 20 grams.

Pete Sessions loses re-election. The Republican from Texas was one of the most outspoken prohibitionists on the Hill (What is it with people with the last name Sessions?) Sessions used his position as Chairman of the House Rules Committee to block House floor members from voting on over three-dozen marijuana-related amendments, according to NORML. He was defeated by democrat and former NFL player, Colin Allred.


North Dakota fails to legalize. Voters in the Roughrider state put the kibosh on an initiative that would have legalized marijuana in the ultra-conservative state.

Beto O'Rourke loses a close race to Ted Cruz in Texas. Beto was an advocate of legalizing marijuana. Cruz -- not so much.

Ron DeSantis defeats Andrew Gillum. This closely watched election doesn't bring Florida any closer to full-on legalization, though DeSantis has said he's in favor of medical marijuana. 

Related: Who Are the Pro-Pot Candidates on the Ballot?