Wisconsin State Assembly Candidate creates conversations about cannabis

Shortly after the announcement from Jay Selthofner to run for the Wisconsin State Assembly seat in district 41 the initial press releases where sent to the local newspapers.  Each received the same press release, information and were referenced back to our website and sources.  Two of the major newspapers, The Berlin Journal (and affiliate papers) and The Ripon Commonwealth Press were the first to break the story.

The headline in the Berlin Journal read “Local man announces candidacy for the 41st district”. The Berlin Journal has a wide circulation area and actually has affiliate papers that run the same information.  The story was carried in the Green Lake Reporter with the title “Green Lake man announces…” and was also carried in the Omro Herald, Princeton Times Republic, Markesan Regional Reporter and Fox Lake Representative.

Berlin Journal Article about Selthofner Campaign
Berlin Journal Article about Selthofner Campaign

Scott Mundro of the Berlin Journal conducted an interview with Jay Selthofner prior to writing the article for the newspapers.  During the interview Scott referenced that he had a chance to visit and was impressed with the professional of the Jay Selthofner campaign website.  Compliments from the community regarding both Selthofner and the Berlin Journal article are still being heard.

The Ripon Commonwealth Press also covered the story of the cannabis campaign and created the headline “Marijuana Advocate will challenge Ballweg for District 41”. The Selthofner campaign stated that the Ripon Commonwealth Press did not request an interview prior to release of their story.  Selthofner himself went on to say, “during my volunteer work I have provided the local media and current legislators with a plethora of information, including materials and sources for their own review on the topic of marijuana” adding “with help from local residents and supporters, we organized The THC Tour (Talking Hemp and Cannabis Tour) which debuted in Berlin and is featured on various public media outlets, including the local chapter of the National Organization for the reform of Marijuana Laws, Northern Wisconsin NORML’s Youtube channel, and with the wealth of information on the subject on my official campaign website, I do not expect every newspaper to contact me directly, all of the information to make an educated and informed opinion about marijuana is out there, you just have to look and report on it.”

Marijuana Advocate will challenge Ballweg for District 41
Marijuana Advocate will challenge Ballweg for District 41

Tim Lyke, publisher of the Ripon Commonwealth Press had his opinion printed in the paper.  The opinion piece entitled “Don’t Get High – Get Real” referenced the Selthofner campaign and specifically the issue of recreational marijuana use.  Both the website of Ripon Commonwealth Press and blog for the Selthofner campaign received dozens of positive emails with supporting evidence regarding Selthofner’s stance.

Tim Lyke article in Ripon Commonwealth Press July 1st, 2010
Tim Lyke article in Ripon Commonwealth Press July 1st, 2010

The Ripon Commonweath Press also gave the last word to readers and invited them to share their thoughts through a letter to the editor.  The Ripon Commonwealth Press conducted a poll during the week of print for Tim Lyke’s letter and the newspaper did invite all readers to participate.

The poll and options giving both in print and on the Ripon Commonwealth Press website:

So, what do you think about…..Legalizing Marijuana?

Yes, for all uses.

Yes, for medical only.

Yes, but not for ingestion.

Not under any circumstance.

During the following week the conversations about marijuana and the topic of reform continued throughout the community, district, state and nation.  Selthofner is not the only candidate running for state office with an emphasis on reform for the current marijuana laws, but not all other candidates are catching the national eye as Jay is with the Selthofner Truth, Honesty and Compassion campaign and modest fundraising goal of $4.20 from 10,000 supporters.

Recent legislation in other states keeps the topic in the state and national news.  Cannabis specific blogs/forums such as The Weed Blog promise to keep the awareness campaign going and to help question political candidates.  Recently Jay Selthofner was interviewed by Jaime Casinova of The Cannabis Agenda, a weekly cannabis news source providing nationwide coverage.  The approximate 12 minute interview and segment aired Tuesday, July 12th, 2010.  Selthofner’s segment is aired at approximately one (1) hour and thirty six (36) minutes into the program.  The interviewers expressed the time Selthofner spent with them after the interview was extensive and they feel this candidate has the right ingredients to win the state assembly seat.

The Cannabis Agenda http://cannabisagenda.com/
The Cannabis Agenda http://cannabisagenda.com/

It is not just the marijuana movement tracking Selthofner, the environmentalists, business community, tourism industry along with civil and states rights activists are excited about the prospering young Independent candidate.  The debate over prohibition spilled over to Marketplace Magazine in an article entitled “We’ll drink to that!” as author Steve Prestegard comments about the Selthofner campaign and Tim Lyke’s response.  The article recapped the Selthofner/Lyke exchange and follow up letters from the Selthofner Campaign Treasurer and former prosecutor Mr. James Gierach of L.E.A.P (Law Enforcement Against Prohibition) and gave some additional advice from author Steve Prestegard “the better arguments for legalization are based on individual personal freedom, not alleged benefit.”

Marketplace Magazine, Steve Prestegard
Marketplace Magazine, Steve Prestegard

The letters Steve Prestegard mentioned are posted in part on the Ripon Commonwealth Press website and in full print in the July 15th, 2010 edition of the paper, as well as in the comments section of the Tim Lyke article and on Jay’s blog.

Readers of the print paper found Franke and Gierach’s responses the results of the recent “Marijuana Poll” conducted by The Ripon Commonwealth Press.

And the results are………………………………………………………………

So, what do you think about…..Legalizing Marijuana?

Yes, for all uses:                                       86%

Yes, for medical only:                               8%

Yes, but not for ingestion:                       1%

Not under any circumstance:                 6%

High Approval for reform of marijuana laws
High Approval for reform of marijuana laws

The issue of marijuana reform is long overdue.  The studies that show marijuana has accepted and practical medicinal uses are mainstream.  The use of industrial hemp for food and fiber has been known since antiquity.  Prohibition is not the answer and prohibition certainly has not won the failed policy known as the “War on Drugs”.

Paid for by Friends of Jay Selthofner ATTN: Jessica Franke, Treasurer PO BOX 542 Ripon, WI 54971
Paid for by Friends of Jay Selthofner ATTN: Jessica Franke, Treasurer PO BOX 542 Ripon, WI 54971

Please donate $4.20 today to the campaign of Jay Selthofner.

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