Politics

Medical Marijuana Advocates Rally at Miami Courthouse Today in Push for 2016 Ballot

Eventually, medical marijuana will be legal nationwide. Yes, even in Florida, where 58 percent support at the ballot box last time around wasn't enough to enshrine the change in state laws. 

In fact, the campaign behind that last Florida medical weed effort — United for Care — is pushing hard to make sure the drug becomes legal in the Sunshine State in 2016. Today at noon, volunteers from the campaign, which is an offshoot of the Orlando-based People United for Medical Marijuana, will meet at the downtown Miami-Dade county courthouse to hold a rally advocating for legalization. Similar rallies are planned at courthouses around the state.

As part of the event, the group will also be collecting and distributing petitions. In order for an amendment to return to the ballot in 2016, the group needs to send in at least 600,000 more signatures to the Florida Supreme Court. That's a hell of a lot.

Polling, though, shows there should be more than enough Floridians who (quite logically) actually support medical weed: In a Quinnipiac study earlier this year, 84 percent of Sunshine State residents polled said they are in favor.

In last year's Amendment 2 referendum for legal medical marijuana, nearly six out of ten supported decriminalization — but the final vote ended up a hair shy of the required 60 percent threshold for a constitutional amendment. 

"We almost made it last time," Ben Pollara, an organizer for United for Care, told New Times earlier this summer. "Given the fact that a lot more people will be voting in the [2016] election, we should comfortably meet and reach that."

Assuming, of course, that the group gets all those damn petition signatures first.  
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Trevor Bach