Prop 203 Recap: From Distant Hope to Victory; Final Numbers Show Measure Won

The passage of Proposition 203 will go down as one of the most memorable elections in state history.

The final numbers are in, and Arizona's medical marijuana has won by 4, 341 votes. There's no turning back. The Maricopa County elections department, in a bulletin sent moments ago, reports that Monday's update will be "minimal."

Just three days ago, the measure appeared to be riding an unstoppable wave to defeat. This historic election was a nail-biter of epic proportions for observers on both sides. On Election Day, November 2, the measure looked to have been narrowly defeated. Numerous blog sites and a few reputable media outlets, like the Phoenix Business Journal, called the race for the "no" side.

Days went by in which the measure hung in there, but didn't seem to be gathering enough steam to pull off a win. A new trend developed in the last couple of days of counting provisional ballots and then, in the Friday's evening vote count, the measure bounced from losing by 700 to winning by about 4,400.

An apparent miracle, to supporters. To opponents -- sorcery.

Scroll down for links to all of our blog posts on the issue since Election Day, filled with hundreds of great comments from our readers:

November 2, 8:40 p.m.

Night's Still Young, but Proposition 203's Trailing in Early Votes; Potential Landslides Could be Ahead for Republicans Jan Brewer, David Schweikert, and Ben Quayle. John McCain Landslide All but Certain


November 2, 8:49 p.m.

Medical Marijuana Proponents Remain Hopeful, Despite Early Results


November 2, 9:59 p.m.

Some Races Neck-and-Neck as Statewide Votes Pour In; Grijalva and Horne Pulling Ahead, for the Moment


November 2, 11:16 p.m.

Arizona Medical Marijuana Bill Still Too Close to Call


November 3, 10:24 a.m.

Proposition 203 Still Has Hope; Arizona's Medical Marijuana Measure Could Still (Maybe, Possibly) Win


November 3, 5:59 p.m.

Prop 203 Analysis: How Arizona's Medical Marijuana Measure Could Win; Plus, What Happened?


November 4, 8:33 a.m.

Joe Arpaio Pissy Over Pro-Pot T-Shirt Bearing His Image (Okay, this only mentions the election indirectly, but we still think it's funny.)


November 4, 6:40 p.m.

Prop 203 Closes Gap -- But Isn't Quite There Yet; Latest Vote Count Shows Medical Marijuana Still in Running


November 7, 5:53 p.m.

Prop 203 Loses More Ground in Weekend Vote Counts


November 8, 5:10 p.m.

Prop 203 Still has Chance: Lead by Opponents Shrinks Again


November 9, 5:49 p.m.

Prop 203 Update: Closer, but No Cigar -- Yet


November 11, 5:47 p.m.

Prop 203: Friday Deadline More a Suggestion Than Deadline. Results Not Expected Until Next Week


November 11, 6:28 p.m.

Prop 203 Spokesman: "We're Likely to Win" Based on Trend of Provisional Ballots


November 12, 5:43 p.m.

Prop 203 Up by 4,200 Votes -- Looks Like It's Gonna Win


November 12, 6:24 p.m.

Prop 203 Appears to Have Won; Remaining Ballots Unlikely to Reverse Trend


Bonus material: Our October 21 article on Proposition 203, which explains how the law will work: Prop 203 -- the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act -- Puts the Chronic in Chronic Pain


New Times will continue to cover Proposition 203 and what it means for Arizona in the coming days.

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.