Cannabis policy adviser reaches third place in California governor’s election poll


Cannabis Policy Advisor Jackie McGowan is making a name for herself in the hotly contested California election to recall Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom, placing third among dozens of candidates in a statewide poll released the last week. The results show that McGowan had the support of 5% of poll respondents, behind Larry Elder (27%), conservative Republican radio talk show host and fellow Democrat Kevin Paffrath (6%). But the investigation also shows that McGowan, who is leading a campaign based in part on fixing the struggling legal cannabis industry in California, is ahead of Republicans with stronger name recognition, including the member of State Assembly Kevin Kiley (4%) and former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer (3%).

“As the top three candidate from a group of 46, I look forward to debating my opponents,” McGowan said in a campaign press release. “When you look at Larry Elder and Kevin Paffrath’s position on the response to Covid-19 and the recall, it’s two peas in a pod and bad for California. “

Majority of voters oppose recall

However, the poll from Change Research, a San Francisco-based firm that conducts polls for Democratic candidates and progressive causes, showed waning support for Newsom’s impeachment. Only 42% of those polled said they supported the recall, while 57% said they opposed the effort and only 1% were undecided. The poll questioned 782 likely voters from August 22 to 25. An earlier poll conducted by Change Research in June found that 43% were in favor of the recall and 54% against. The most recent poll also showed that 92% of Democratic voters planned to vote in the recall election or had already done so, up from 84% in June.

“To me, these are very encouraging numbers for Newsom and the ‘no’ campaign,” Ben Greenfield, senior pollster for Change Research, told local media.

“What drove these June numbers was that enthusiasm was lagging behind Democratic voters,” Greenfield added. “And what we’re seeing now is that as the ballots come out, the ‘no’ campaign is spending a lot of money to make sure voters know what the stakes are. This message gets through. “

Other polls, however, point to a tighter race in the attempt to remove Newsom. An analysis of the survey data adjusted for quality and sample size by the FiveThirtyEight website shows that Newsom has a much more modest advantage, with 50.6% of voters likely opposed to the recall and 46, 3% in favor.

Under the laws that govern recall elections in California, voters will see two questions on the ballot. The first asks if Newsom should be removed from his post. To answer the second question, voters choose a replacement to serve Newsom’s term from among nearly four dozen candidates. If a majority of voters choose to remove Newsom from office, the candidate with a plurality of votes will become the next governor of California, opening up the possibility that Newsom could be replaced by someone who receives fewer votes than those cast for the hold back.

A campaign rooted in cannabis

Although she did not sign petitions that forced the recall vote and opposes Newsom’s impeachment, her Democratic colleague McGowan said she launched her campaign for governor as police insurance against the largely Republican-led recall effort. She is leading a campaign based, among other priorities, on homelessness and justice reform, responding to the needs of the legal marijuana industry in California, which so far has fallen short of expectations.

Tax revenues for the legal cannabis industry in California have lagged behind projections, and the state’s illicit cannabis market continues to account for a significant portion of sales. Industry challenges have led some desperate small farmers to take their own lives, McGowan said in a telephone interview, though she declined to provide details out of respect for the families involved.

“Governor Newsom was a major proponent of legalizing cannabis, but his administration’s implementation of the law harmed so many Californians and even led to an increase in suicides,” McGowan said in a press release. in July. “We need a governor who understands cannabis and the economy and who can make California work for all Californians.”

McGowan, an 18-year veteran of the Wall Street financial world who has been a cannabis consultant since 2014, believes that easing the state’s stringent marijuana regulations and supporting small businesses can benefit all Californians.

“Lowering barriers to entry into the legal cannabis market will not only bring $ 5 billion in additional revenue to the state of California, but will also deter criminal organizations from stealing market share,” she writes. in an email.

Election day for the California governors’ recall vote is September 14, 2021, although all registered voters have received ballots and by Monday 17% have already been returned.

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