DeSantis was defeated in Florida's marijuana court ruling

Score one for the voters

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has made his views on marijuana clear. He called recreational cannabis a problem, complained about the “stench” of marijuana and warned darkly that drugs were destroying this country. After voters approved medical marijuana, he said it wasn't enough and had them vote again, which passed with 71% of the vote. Although his campaign received major funding from some major players in the industry, his public persona remained stable. When Florida introduced a ballot initiative to legalize recreational activities, DeSantis expressed his displeasure. Ashley Moody, Florida's attorney general and ally of Gov. Ron DeSantis, urged the state Supreme Court to reject a proposed constitutional amendment that would legalize recreational cannabis.

RELATED: Looks like Virginia is the newest marijuana nanny state

Today, in a 5-2 decision, the Florida Supreme Court placed a proposed initiative to legalize adult-use cannabis on the November 5, 2024 vote. This deals several blows to the governor as it rejects his and the Attorney General's argument. Marijuana is on the ballot along with another ballot initiative and is sure to energize voters who may not vote in line with DeSantis' goals. And it shows that despite his stance, his government, including the courts, is out of step.

“This is one of the most important cannabis legalization campaigns in recent years,” said Matthew Schweich, executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project. “We have the opportunity to end the injustice of cannabis prohibition for over 22 million Americans.”

The ballot initiative, spearheaded by Smart and Safe Florida, would legalize cannabis for adults 21 and older and allow legal sales by licensed businesses. To be approved, the initiative must be approved by 60% of voters. Of the 24 states with an initiative process, Florida is the only state that requires 60% to pass an initiative.

RELATED: Science Says Medical Marijuana Improves Quality of Life

If the ballot reaches the 60% approval mark, the initiative would take effect six months after Election Day. The initiative would allow adults 21 and older to possess up to one ounce of cannabis flower and five grams of concentrate. Medical cannabis pharmacies will be allowed to sell cannabis to adults over the age of 21. The legislature would still retain the ability to issue additional licenses in the future.

Gov. Ron DeSantis appointed five of the seven justices. One judge said he was “baffled” by the state's argument that the wording was misleading, and other justices were similarly skeptical of the state's push against the change. This is another blow to the court's ruling against the governor's stated position.

RELATED: The Ideas of Today's Marijuana User Are Not What You Think

So far, neither the governor nor the attorney general have responded.

Post a comment:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *