Oklahoma Announces vote on Medical Marijuana in June Despite Sessions
Oklahoma announced that voters will decide whether medical marijuana will be legalized in the state on the same day that the Department of Justice announced a rollback of guidelines that had previously set a standard for federal non-interference with similar programs.
Gov. Mary Fallin (R) signed a proclamation Thursday setting the referendum date for June 26 during the primary election.
“Supporters of an initiative petition asking voters to legalize medical marijuana gathered enough signatures in 2016 to schedule a statewide referendum on the measure.
‘Backers of this proposal to legalize medical marijuana followed procedures and gathered the more than 66,000 required signatures to submit the issue to a vote of the people,’ said Fallin. ‘I’m fulfilling my duty as governor to decide when that election will occur this year.’
If approved by voters, the measure would permit doctors to recommend a patient, who is at least 18 years old, for a state-issued medical marijuana license. A license holder would be allowed to legally possess up to 3 ounces of the drug, six mature plants and six seedlings. These limits can be increased by individual counties or cities.”
Currently, 29 other states and the District of Columbia have medical marijuana programs.
The passage of State Question 788 would also allow state residents to apply for commercial grower, processor, retailer and packager licenses, as well as setting a 7% tax on retail medical marijuana sales.
Meanwhile, Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Thursday announced the repeal of an Obama-era policy on dealing with state laws that allow for recreational use of pot.
“It is the mission of the Department of Justice to enforce the laws of the United States, and the previous issuance of guidance undermines the rule of law and the ability of our local, state, tribal, and federal law enforcement partners to carry out this mission. Therefore, today’s memo on federal marijuana enforcement simply directs all U.S. Attorneys to use previously established prosecutorial principles that provide them all the necessary tools to disrupt criminal organizations, tackle the growing drug crisis, and thwart violent crime across our country.”