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Wednesday, November 03, 2004 - Page updated at 12:53 A.M.

Pot measure fails; gay-marriage ban OK'd

By The Associated Press

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PORTLAND — Oregon voters rejected a ballot measure yesterday that would have greatly eased access to medical marijuana and approved a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage.

In addition, U.S. Democratic Rep. David Wu won a big re-election victory despite a tough campaign in which GOP challenger Goli Ameri ran TV ads highlighting sexual-abuse allegations against Wu.

Oregon's marijuana measure, which would raise to 6 pounds the amount patients could legally possess, was one of three on marijuana policy on ballots in Western states. Critics of Oregon's measure said it was aiming toward the goal of legalization. The vote on the gay-marriage ban, meanwhile, handed a crushing defeat to national and state gay-rights groups that had pinned their hopes on Oregon.

National gay organizations had poured money into Oregon, one of 11 states that voted yesterday to impose a ban on same-sex marriage — and the only state that was seen as having a fighting chance of defeating the measure.

The 1st District race between Wu and Ameri took a surprise turn in mid-October, when The Oregonian newspaper published allegations that a former girlfriend accused Wu of attempted sexual assault while they were students at Stanford University in 1976.

Copyright © 2004 The Seattle Times Company

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