Advocates of medical marijuana met their goal -- they collected enough signatures to see that the issue gets posed to voters on this November's ballot.
Elections officials announced today they they verified 710,508 signatures that were submitted -- enough to force a vote on a proposed constitutional amendment. If approved, growing, selling, and using pot for medicinal purposes will be a right enshrined in the state constitution.
The main funder of the push to get pot on the ballot -- John Morgan, a Tampa attorney (and employer of Charlie Crist) -- told the Tampa Bay Times, "I've spent $4 million, hired the best legal minds in the state of Florida, rallied my army of angels and collected more than 1.1 million signatures in five or six months,'' said Orlando trial attorney John Morgan, who took over a small, grass roots petition campaign last year and gave it the clout to get on the ballot.
The exact language of the proposed ballot measure has been submitted to the Florida Supreme Court, which could yea or nay it any day. The state attorney general, Pam Bondi, has argued that the language is too broad -- under it, doctors could prescribe pot for pretty much anyone with any condition, she argued -- and could confuse voters.
Critics say that's hogwash and the Republican Bondi is just protecting conservative governor Rick Scott, who could be hurt in the election if stoners come out in droves to approve medical weed and also vote for Crist instead of Scott while they're in ballot booth. Ah, the power of the pot vote....
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