By a relatively wide margin, Michigan voters on Tuesday said “yes” to legalizing adult-use cannabis for adults, in a vote that spanned party lines and pushed against vehement opposition groups.

The adoption of the ballot proposal makes Michigan the 10th U.S. state to legalize recreational marijuana for adults 21 and older; and the first state in the Midwest to do so, with a margin of 56-44. In 2008, the state adopted a proposal to legalize the use of medical cannabis. So why did it take a decade for Michigan to go from medical to recreational marijuana?

“It’s a state that relies on facts, not fiction,” says Josh Hovey, communications director for Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol (CRMLA), the main Michigan-based campaign behind Proposal 1.

“Michigan is not usually a state that gets out in front on bold reforms like ending marijuana prohibition,” he says. “As a campaign, we are thrilled that Michigan will be a leader when it comes to cannabis reform in the Midwest. We’ve developed what we believe will be a model law for other states in the Midwest to look to. It’s one that learns from the best practices in states like Colorado and Washington.”


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