01STOCK_MARIJUANA

JANESVILLE

Sixty-nine percent of Rock County voters said Tuesday they supported legalizing the recreational use of marijuana in Wisconsin.

It was an overwhelming passage for what has been billed as the marijuana advisory referendum. The results showed that county voters resoundingly support legalizing and taxing marijuana like alcohol.

Rock County’s vote almost identically mirrors the results on a similarly worded advisory referendum in Milwaukee County, which passed by about 70 percent. In Racine County, about 59 percent of voters said recreational marijuana should be legal, while 85 percent said medicinal marijuana should be legal.

Sixty-eight percent of voters in the city of Racine also said recreational marijuana should be legal.

Rock County Board member Yuri Rashkin in June introduced the resolution calling for the referendum and has led the charge for its passage. He said Tuesday night the next step is looking at “what we can do to make the will of the people the law of land.”

When asked if that means pushing the state Legislature to legalize marijuana, Rashkin responded confidently, “Yes.”

He said it could also involve looking at how local ordinances can be changed to match the outcome of Tuesday’s results.

“I think that this is where we need to continue to apply pressure to our elected officials,” Rashkin said. “There’s a certain feeling of validation, and it feels great. … Validation that this is something I felt people believed, and (69) percent of people apparently agree.”

Because the measure was advisory, the results will hold no bearing on law. But advocates of the referendum have consistently said the results could eventually trigger laws statewide.

The referendum was placed on the ballot after the county board passed the measure 14-12 on June 28.

GazetteXtra.com does not condone or review every comment. Read more in our Commenter Policy Agreement

  • Keep it clean. Comments that are obscene, vulgar or sexually oriented will be removed. Creative spelling of such terms or implied use of such language is banned, also.
  • Don't threaten to hurt or kill anyone.
  • Be nice. No racism, sexism or any other sort of -ism that degrades another person.
  • Harassing comments. If you are the subject of a harassing comment or personal attack by another user, do not respond in-kind. Use the "Report comment abuse" link below to report offensive comments.
  • Share what you know. Give us your eyewitness accounts, background, observations and history.
  • Do not libel anyone. Libel is writing something false about someone that damages that person's reputation.
  • Ask questions. What more do you want to know about the story?
  • Stay focused. Keep on the story's topic.
  • Help us get it right. If you spot a factual error or misspelling, email newsroom@gazettextra.com or call 1-800-362-6712.
  • Remember, this is our site. We set the rules, and we reserve the right to remove any comments that we deem inappropriate.

Report comment abuse