The state's alcohol trade association is coming out strongly against the voter initiative to legalize marijuana in California.
California Beer and Beverage Distributors has donated $10,000 to the "No on Prop. 19" campaign, citing safety reasons as the basis of their opposition to the proposal that would allow residents older than 21 to legally use marijuana.
"They're looking at it as a public safety issue," said campaign spokesperson Roger Salazar. "They have fleets of hundreds and hundreds of trucks they run up and down the state, and I don't think they want their drivers under the influence of marijuana any more than they want them drinking beer while they're driving."
The alcohol industry boasts annual sales in the billions nationwide, and some believe the industry's motivation isn't public safety, but rather taking away choices.
"Competition is good unless you get actual competition," said tourist Ed Trigg.
Salazar calls the argument a "red herring" and says it is not true.
"I think any sort of allusion to any other reason is just a scare tactic by the other side," he said.
The trade association did not respond to requests for comment from CBS13.
Sep 15, 2010 10:50 pm US/Pacific
COMMENT: In indianna the alcohol industry has now come out supporting a ban of synthetic cannabinoids. See: US States and Beverage Retail Bodies Seek Ban of Marijuana-like Supplement
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Alcohol Trade Comes Out Against Legal Marijuana