July 13, 2016
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel
Sacramento, CA – The California Teamsters union, whose political-action committee gave $25,000 to the campaign against the Proposition 64 marijuana-legalization initiative in March, has decided to stay neutral.
“We’re not going to tell our members how to vote, and we’re not going to contribute money to either campaign,” said Teamsters lobbyist Barry Broad. He said the union’s polling had showed strong support for the Adult Use of Marijuana Act ballot initiative, which would allow the sale of marijuana to adults 21 and older under state regulations. "Our calculation was we think there's a reasonably good chance it will pass," he said. The union’s main problem with the initiative, he added, was that it might enable cannabis businesses to become monopolies, as it would let them grow, distribute, and sell pot—unlike the state’s alcohol laws, which require manufacturing, distribution, and retail sales to be done by separate businesses. If Prop 64 passes, he added, the Teamsters might lobby for an independent distributor system. Read more