In Nevada, a cannabis store is raising the stakes. Voters in the Feb. 22 Democratic primary who wear the popular sticker to The Source outlets in Las Vegas and Henderson will get a free pre-roll, or so the dispensary proclaimed in a Monday morning press release.
Soon after sending that release, though, officials at The Source realized the free joint deal, while generous and patriotic, was not technically allowed under the state’s strict cannabis rules. Nevada’s Department of Taxation, which oversees the cannabis industry, prohibits stores from advertising or offering any marijuana product free without a purchase.
So they adapted. From Monday, Feb. 17, through Saturday, Feb. 22, adults 21 and older who come in to either of The Source’s two stores wearing an “I Voted” sticker will receive a complimentary pre-roll with a $20 purchase.
It’s not quite the same—but hey, it’s still a great deal.
Nevada could make or break candidates
The eight Democrat candidates in Nevada’s high-stakes caucus may need a joint to relax after an already-bruising primary season—and we’re only three states in.
The third state to hold voting in advance of November’s election, Nevada has been a remarkably accurate measuring stick for Democratic candidates in recent years.
In 2008, Barack Obama closely edged Hillary Clinton with 13 to 12 delegates in Nevada’s caucus-style scoring system, despite Clinton winning the Silver State’s popular vote. In 2016, Clinton beat Sanders by just five points and five delegates after polling as much as 25 points higher earlier that year.
Here’s how the caucus works
Nevada’s primary system combines elements of a voting-booth primary with a classic caucus.
Those who wish to cast an early ballot for their favorite contender can do so between Saturday, Feb. 15, and Tuesday, Feb. 18, at one of 80 voting stations around the state.
Those early votes are then tallied on caucus day—Saturday, Feb. 22—and combined with votes from the actual Saturday caucuses, which typically take place in community halls, school gymnasiums, or even hotel ballrooms. Delegates aren’t required to choose the candidate that received the most votes in their precinct, but normally do so to honor the will of the voters.
Since the Iowa Democratic caucus fiasco, party officials in Nevada have been scrambling to make sure caucus results are reported accurately and on time. Plans to use the same app that crashed in Iowa were scrapped, and party officials have installed an iPad-based tool to carry out basic math and record the results.
The race is, um, very dynamic
Voter loyalties have proven to be fleeting and shifty in the past few weeks. Mid-January poll aggregations from FiveThirtyEight and 270toWin suggested a neck-and-neck race at the top between Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders, who were each favored by 17 to 24 percent of likely voters. Elizabeth Warren came in third with about 12 percent, followed by Tom Steyer and Pete Buttigieg.
But after emerging as the surprise winner in Iowa and runner-up in New Hampshire, Buttigieg now has momentum, said Michael Green, a Nevada political historian and professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
The recent push figures to vault the South Bend mayor up the Silver State’s leaderboard, mostly at the expense of Biden, Green said.
“Buttigieg is the hot candidate right now,” he said. “It’s amazing how much can change in a couple weeks.”