There is a lot here, but worth the time.
As I sit looking at the clock and write this post it is less than 28 hours and we are going to be done ... with this election cycle. It is tough I know. Everybody thinks they are in the right, and a lot of people aren't engaged in the process, and everybody loves fish. Look I get it. Politics is like divorce. The best settlements are where everybody is pissed at the Judge. Everybody gets something and everybody is still hoping for more. That is the whole point. Nobody ends up dancing in the street.
But I want to let everybody know something. The AMIA reached out to the candidates Statewide. We made an effort to make sure that every candidate who was running got our candidate survey and we gave everyone an equal chance to respond. Whether some of our candidate survey mails got ignored, sent to junk or spam, or just overlooked because they didn't know what we were doing, I can't say. But we made a hell of and effort on behalf of you, our members to reach out responsibly without any bias.
It was ONE WEEK ago that the Board felt the need to put the spotlight on the candidates who were for or against cannabis. Look at it from our perspective for a minute. We spend the Legislative session trying to figure out who is in our corner, and moving the issues and bills forward that are going to be beneficial to this industry. No Party or Personality, and no BS. If as a candidate you are with us and committed to getting us banking, and helping to de-schedule hemp and cannabis, and keeping the onsite issue out of the cross-hairs of the smoking bill, and a thousand other things, then you are with us. Party doesn't matter and I don't care what Facebook group you belong to, whether you are green, red, or blue. It all boils down to if you advocate for the cannabis industry, for us, or if you don't.
I know that there were people who supported candidates who DID NOT RESPOND to us. There has been a bit of push back about some candidates who weren't in the wave of those mentioned over the weekend. That doesn't mean that they weren't qualified, that does not mean they don't support us. It doesn't even mean that "your" candidate was snubbed. It just means that they didn't reach out, or didn't understand what our survey was (first time we've done this), or they didn't know where this was going to end up. We didn't either. Like I said, the board wanted you to be informed.
The "Green Stamp" became the vehicle. It also became insanely popular. Why? Because people understand that we have one mission: Cannabis Advocacy.
We stay out of the mud. We like organic soil, and coconut husks, and peat, but we stay out of the "MUD".
I don't care about your politics, and you should not give a quart of stale bong water about mine. We share one piece of ground, and that is what has made us powerful. We all want legal marijuana. That's it. Done.
When people realized that we were going to be supportive of (green stamp) candidates who were answering the survey supporting cannabis it became difficult. It was a last minute decision to help identify candidates who had positions supporting cannabis. Because of that non-partisan focus, we got popular quickly. If there had been even a hint of the impact our attempt to communicate cannabis positions was going to create, we would have done this differently. I mean look at the obvious. Don Young is a part of the Cannabis Caucus, but that campaign did not reach out.
Next time we will and there will be more lead time and there will be more notice to the AMIA members too. And there will be notice of who opposes and who simply chooses to ignore, so all candidates get the chance to respond in the manner they choose.
And here is where the rubber hits the road. We are young and we are still growing, we are a part of a STATEWIDE association that has grown by leaps and bounds. We live and we learn. That, as always, is on us. We will adapt and change based on your needs. Stay involved. But you still need to get to the polls. You still need to get out and VOTE. We get a chance at the ballot box like this every couple of years to move things forward. If you don't vote, honestly, it doesn't matter who does or doesn't get a green stamp. Next time we enter a big election, we'll be more prepared and you will be more helpful and informed, and every candidate who needs an endorsement will know what is coming down the tracks with a ton of lead time. We can and will make it better.
Last thing? I really appreciate the feedback that we get, but feel free to reach out in advance if you don't know what is going on. I can only make it better when you tell me.
Email is pretty good way to reach out. I'm slow sometimes, but I'm busy, like you.
But not to busy to Vote.