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Who’re the highest donors of the marijuana legalization marketing campaign in 2020? We now have all the info

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Four years ago, prohibition groups fighting the legalization of cannabis were in the money.

Opponents of legalization are only hurting for money in a few weeks until election day.

In 2016, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson spent millions to derail legalization. Pennsylvania-based philanthropist Julie Schauer donated tens of thousands of dollars to opponents of legalization. Pharmaceutical company Insys, which makes the opioid fentanyl, spent a ton of money killing the adult legalization initiative in Arizona.

In 2020 that's a different story. Sheldon Adelson gave nothing to the fight against legalization. Julie Schauer was not heard from. Insys' high-flying political days ended when founder John Kapoor was sentenced to five years in prison for bribery and fraud. Several other Insys executives were also tried and convicted.

In most of the five states that took measures to legalize cannabis in 2020, public campaign funding data suggests prohibitionists have been injured over cash.

connected

2020 Election: Everything You Need To Know About Legalizing Cannabis On The Ballot

Legalization campaigns don't seem to suffer from such a drought. Montana advocates of adult legalization raised more than $ 7 million. The Arizona legalization campaign raised nearly $ 3.5 million. Mississippi's medical marijuana campaign passed the $ 1 million mark.

For complete information on all 2020 legalization campaigns, see the Leafly 2020 Marihuana Legalization Voter Guide.

Here is a breakdown of the major donors by state based on state financial disclosure data.

Arizona

The majority of donations to Smart & Safe Arizona, which runs the Prop. 207 campaign, come from cannabis companies. By the last filing period, advocates for legalization had raised nearly $ 3.5 million. Its largest donor is Harvest, the Arizona-based medical marijuana company, which donated nearly $ 1.5 million. Curaleaf, which has pharmacies and cannabis retail stores in 23 states, donated $ 600,000. Cresco Labs, a six-state licensed cannabis company, donated $ 300,000.

Campaign officials told Leafly last week that donations from state medical marijuana companies have increased in recent weeks. These donations may be tied to polls showing an intensified race for legalization.

Smart and Safe outperforms the measure's opponent, Arizonans for Health and Public Safety, exponentially. The Arizona opposition group has raised around $ 150,000, mostly from the Conservative Center for Arizona Policy Action. Kevin Sabet's national anti-legalization group, Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), also donated $ 12,500.

Political donors in Arizona

Top donors for legalization (Prop. 207)

DonorAmountNotes

Harvest $ 1,425,000. Largest medical cannabis brand in Arizona

Curaleaf $ 600,000National Cannabis Brand

MM Enterprises USA $ 200,000aka MedMen, national cannabis brand

Cresco Labs $ 300,000National cannabis brand

Copperstate Farms $ 155,000 Major Arizona Medical Cannabis Brand

Arizona Dispensaries Association $ 79,500

Herbal Wellness Center $ 64,000 Major Arizona Medical Cannabis Brand

Oasis Dispensaries $ 60,000 Major medical cannabis brand from Arizona

Top donors against legalization (Prop. 207)

DonorAmountNotes

Center for Arizona Policy Action $ 100,000Extremely right-wing policy shop declaring porn an "Arizona public health crisis"

SAM Action $ 12,500 National Prohibition Advocacy Group

Jim Click, Jr. $ 5,000Celebrity Tucson Dealership Owner, Republican Party Donor

Beth Coons $ 5,000 chairman of Farnsworth Construction (Mesa, AZ), active community leader

Sheila S. Polk $ 5,000Yavapai (AZ) District Attorney, longtime prohibitionist

Thomas Polk $ 5,000 Precott attorney, married to Sheila Polk

Naomi Cramer $ 5,000 Head of Human Resources at Banner Health, Arizona

Andrea Kadar $ 1,000 Sedona-right rights activist

Steve Twist $ 1,000Arizona Republican Realtor

Mississippi

In Mississippi, the only state with medical marijuana in November (Initiative 65), the Medical Marijuana 2020 (MM2020) campaign had raised around $ 2 million as of August 31.

Most of their contributions come from Rep. Joel Bomgar (R), a local tech entrepreneur who donated $ 550,000 to the campaign. The Marijuana Leadership Campaign, a Texas-based group led by Rob Kampia, former leader of the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), has supported the campaign with $ 253,500.

The Marihuana Leadership Campaign was launched by Kampia after MPP cut ties with its co-founder and longtime leader in 2017 on allegations of sexual harassment. MM2020 also received a $ 800,000 loan from First Commercial Bank in Jackson, Mississippi.

While Mississippi state lawmakers are trying to derail the medical marijuana initiative through their own confusing and misleading bill, no political action committee has filed organizing papers to crack down on Initiative 65, the real medical marijuana bill.

Mississippi Political Donors

Top donor for legalization (Initiative 65)

NameAmountNotes

Joel Bomgar $ 550,000Tech Entrepreneur and State Representative

Marijuana Leadership Campaign $ 253,500National group led by Rob Kampia, formerly MPP

Richard Schwartz $ 30,000 Personal Injury Attorney

James Stafford $ 20,000 Accountant, Ward Leader, Church Deacon

Angie & Austin Calhoun $ 20,000 Parents of One Son Struggle with Debilitating Seizures

George Walker III $ 10,000 CEO of Heritage Properties

Ghost Management Group $ 10,000 owner of weedmaps

Robert Lloyde II $ 5,000owner of ABKO Labs, a cannabis / hemp testing company

Top donors against legalization (Initiative 65)

NameAmountNotes

NoneNoneNone

Montana

The campaign to legalize adult cannabis use in Montana raised the most money of all government campaigns this year. Montana has tandem legalization measures on the ballot: Initiative 190 works with Constitutional Initiative 118 to legalize for all adults.

New Approach Montana had raised nearly $ 7 million on September 25 and received nearly $ 5 million from The North Fund, a DC-based PAC organization that supports progressive causes. The fund is under no legal obligation to disclose its donors, and a spokesperson declined to do so when reached by Leafly.

Almost $ 2 million came from the national New Approach PAC (which, according to IRS documents, received $ 5 million from Dr. Bronner's soap company this year).

New Approach Montana has also raised funds from the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and in-kind contributions from the Marijuana Policy Project.

Wrong for Montana, the opposition campaign raised a fraction of New Approach's money: about $ 78,000. The majority of their donations come from the Montana Family Foundation ($ 30,000). Wrong for Montana's treasurer Steve Zabawa, who also owns the Rimrock Auto Group ($ 15,000); and the Montana Contractors' Association ($ 25,000).

Montana political donors

Top donors for legalization (Initiatives 190 & 118)

NameAmountNotes

The North Fund $ 4,800,000 Progressive PAC in Washington, DC

New Approach PAC $ 1,900,000National Legalization Political Advocacy Group

Service Employees International Union (SEIU) $ 100,000 National union

Marijuana Policy Project $ 50,230 National Legalization Organization

Ghost Management $ 25,000owner of weedmaps

Trust for Public Land US $ 1,450 donation in kind from the Public Land Protection Group

Top donors against legalization (initiatives 190 & 118)

NameAmountNotes

Montana Family Foundation $ 30,000 Conservative political advocacy

Montana Contractors Association $ 25,000 trading group

Steve Zabawa $ 15,000Billing's car dealer, longtime opponent of legalization

Rich Friedel $ 5,000Owner of a drug control company with government contracts related to the criminalization of marijuana

Scott Paulsen $ 2,000

Montana Auto Dealers Association $ 1,000 trade group

New Jersey

New Jersey's campaign finance laws require political campaigns to submit financial documents only one month before the election. Leafly is awaiting the release of the New Jersey data and is expected to be released in mid-October.

Oregon

In Oregon’s two novel legalization measures – Measure 109 would legalize regulated medical use of psilocybin, while Measure 110 would decriminalize all drugs and overhaul the state's drug recovery system – two national groups top the list of donations.

The New Approach PAC, which has funded many successful cannabis legalization campaigns in the past, put more than $ 2.5 million behind Measure 109.

Meanwhile, Drug Policy Action, the political campaign arm of the Drug Policy Alliance (they are legally segregated and must comply with federal campaign funding laws) has allocated $ 3.4 million to Action 110.

Action 110 recently received a high-profile $ 500,000 from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the foundation founded and run by pediatrician Priscilla Chan and her husband, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

Measure 109 has no registered opposition group. The opponents of measure 110, No to measure 110, raised a small amount of money. Their main beneficiary, attorney James O’Rourke, has loaned them $ 40,000. ActionPAC, a campaign money pooling fund from Lake Oswego, OR-based political strategy firm Third Century Solutions, has donated $ 8,000 to the campaign.

Oregon Campaign Donor

Top donor for Measure 109, medical grade psilocybin

NameAmountNotes

New Approach PAC $ 2,575,000 National Legalization Advocacy Fund

Adam Wiggins $ 60,000 Tech Entrepreneur

John Gilmore $ 19,980 co-founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation

Excursion Psychedelics Inc. $ 10,000Medical company specializing in psychedelic therapy

Jack Smith $ 10,000

Sasha Cajkovich $ 10,000

Top Donor Against Measure 109, Medical Psilocybin

NameAmountNotes

NoneNoneNone

Top donor for Measure 110, Decriminalizing All Drugs

NameAmountNotes

Drug Policy Action $ 3,425,000 The political action arm of the Drug Policy Alliance

Chan Zuckerberg Initiative $ 500,000 Foundation led by pediatrician Priscilla Chan and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg

ACLU of Oregon $ 100,000 State Civil Liberties Group

John Gilmore $ 10,000 co-founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation

Oregon AFSCME Council 75 $ 10,000 Local Workers Union

Nurses United Political Action Committee $ 5,000 Health Union

Top donor against measure 110, decriminalizing all drugs

Name AmountNotes

James O & # 39; Rourke $ 40,000 $ 40,000 loan, no donation. O & # 39; Rourke is a Portland trial lawyer.

ActionPAC $ 8,000 Oregon PAC operated by Third Century Solutions lobbying shop in Lake Oswego

Friends of Sandra Nelson US $ 1,200 donation in kind from Beaverton's Republican Representative Campaign

South Dakota

South Dakotans for Better Marijuana Laws and New Approach South Dakota, who are also running the campaign to legalize adult and medical marijuana use, raised just over $ 1 million. Most of this funding – around $ 892,000 – comes from the national New Approach PAC.

The legalization campaign was recently funded by Justin Johnson, a well-known restaurant and bar owner in Sioux Falls. Johnson facilities include Alibi Bar & Grill, Tommy Jack & # 39; s Pub, Upper Cut Bar & Grill, and Woody & # 39; s Pub and Grill.

Your opponents, NO Way on Amendment A, an organization led by Dave Owen, President of the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce, have not submitted financial reports for the campaign.

Political donors in South Dakota

Top Donors for Legalization (IM-26 & CA-A)

NameAmountNotes

New Approach PAC $ 946,750 National Legalization Group

Marijuana Policy Project $ 34,100 National Legalization Group

Justin Johnson $ 25,000Sioux Falls Restaurant Owner

Eberts Property Mgt. Donation in kind of $ 10,000

Melissa Mentele $ 2,000 Legalization Campaign Leader

John Herting $ 420 Citizen of Watertown

James Ferguson $ 420Chicago Resident

Washington, D.C

In DC, DC's Campaign to Decriminalize Nature DC raised approximately $ 675,000, including donations in kind, for Initiative 81, which aims to decriminalize certain psychedelics. The campaign's biggest supporter is the New Approach PAC, which donated $ 585,000. Adam Eidinger, Washington, DC's leading cannabis legalization activist, also donated $ 6,200 to the campaign.

No PAC objected to the measure.

Political donors in Washington, DC

Top donor for Initiative 81

NameAmountNotes

New Approach PAC $ 585,500 National Legalization Fund

Mintwood Strategies $ 74,000DC political strategy firm owned by Adam Eidinger, director of social actions at Dr. Bronner & # 39; s

Adam Eidinger, longtime lawyer for the legalization of cannabis worth $ 6,200 (see above)

Top donors against initiative 81

NameAmountNotes

NoneNoneNone

Leafly will update this page through November 3, 2020 as new information becomes available.

Max Savage Levenson and Bruce Barcott

Max Savage Levenson is Leafly's lead political correspondent for the 2020 election. He lives in Missoula, Montana.

Bruce Barcott is Leafly's chief editor, news and investigation.

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