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AZ Anti-Marijuana Group Accepts $10,000 From Alcohol Assoc.

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The group backing the initiative to legalize marijuana in Arizona that is anticipated to appear on this November’s ballot, the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol (CRMLA), called on the initiative’s opposing group to return a $10,000 donation from the Arizona alcohol industry on grounds of hypocrisy.

Anti-marijuana group, Arizonans for Responsible Drug Policy (ARDP), has repeatedly argued that marijuana should remain illegal because it is too dangerous, according to Phoenix New Times. However, scientists have repeatedly proven that marijuana is far less dangerous than alcohol.

The $10,000 donation from last month came from the Arizona Wine and Spirits Association, a trade association representing numerous alcohol wholesalers.

“Using alcohol money to fund their campaign to maintain marijuana prohibition is grossly hypocritical,” said J.P. Holyoak, CRMLA Chairman. “They want to continue punishing adults for using marijuana, but they have no problem accepting five-figure donations from purveyors of a far more harmful substance. Arizonans for Responsible Drug Policy should return this contribution immediately. If they don’t, they should just acknowledge that their campaign has nothing to do with promoting public health and is merely based on anti-marijuana prejudice.”

CRMLA needs only 150,000 valid signatures by July to get on the November ballot, and currently has collected over 215,000 gross signatures.

“As we finish the signature drive and launch the final stage of the campaign, we anticipate that our opponents will be ramping up their efforts,” said Holyoak. “As they do, we will be watching closely to see whether they continue to receive support from the alcohol industry or from companies that promote the use of alcohol. Our campaign is not opposed to alcohol, but we are opposed to hypocrisy. It is simply inappropriate and objectionable for those who profit from the sale of alcohol to use those profits to prohibit adults from using a less harmful substance.”