Some 16 million Americans were added to the list of places that allow adults to use marijuana legally, after voters in New Jersey, Arizona, South Dakota and Montana on Tuesday overwhelmingly approved ballot measures on weed.
They will join about 93 million Americans who live in states that already have legalized weed, meaning about 1 in 3 Americans now live in states where marijuana is legal for anyone at least 21 years old, according to Politco.com.
South Dakota and Mississippi voters also approved measures to legalize medical marijuana on Election Day.
The momentum in states, including deep red parts of the country, should be a call to action for the federal government, said Steve Hawkins, the executive director of legalization advocacy group Marijuana Policy Project. Marijuana remains illegal under federal law.
“Regardless of who controls the White House, the House and the Senate, we should demand landmark federal marijuana reform in 2021,” Hawkins said.
The New Jersey measure does not immediately legalize marijuana, however. The state Legislature still needs to pass legislation to implement legalization.