- Associated Press - Sunday, November 23, 2014

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Maine marijuana advocates say their state is in position to become the first state in the Northeast to legalize recreational use of the drug.

Marijuana legalization proponents around the country scored a series of wins on election night, when Oregon, Alaska and Washington, D.C. all went legal. Supporters of legalization in Maine say their efforts are buoyed by a ballot initiative in South Portland that legalized small amounts of marijuana in the state’s fourth-largest city. Portland voters also legalized marijuana in Maine’s largest city in 2013.

Maine supporters are crafting a legalization ballot initiative for the 2016 election cycle. The state constitution says the petitioners will need to collect about 61,000 signatures to get the item on the ballot. Organizer David Boyer says the drive will begin soon.

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