By Derrick Stanley
Arizona's Prop 205 campaign finally conceded Tuesday afternoon, ending the high hopes of hundreds of thousands of residents that the state would legalize marijuana.
From the first voting results reported, the initiative's future looked bleak. The Associated Press called it a "no" vote later that night. But marijuana supporters and election watchers remained hopeful, knowing that the final votes could make a difference, like they did in the 2010 election, when legal medical marijuana was approved.
California, Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada voters legalized recreational marijuana. Voters in North Dakota and Florida said "yes" to medical marijuana. But Arizona's Prop 205 was rejected 52-48.
The initiative would have given adults 21 and older the freedom to possess and use up to an ounce of dried marijuana, up to five grams of concentrated resin like hashish, and up to six live plants with a maximum of 12 per household. It would also have created a system of retail stores, giving preference to existing, nonprofit medical-marijuana dispensary companies. The campaign submitted about 259,000 signatures to the state in July to make the ballot.
Here's the entire statement just released from J.P. Holyoak, chair of the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol in Arizona and a local dispensary operator: