Mississippians for Compassionate Care qualified for the ballot after the medical cannabis advocacy group submitted 214,000 signatures.
Mississippi may be among the states to legalize medical cannabis this election, according to a recent poll. Though some suggest state lawmakers have attempted to undermine the measure, a strong contingency of bipartisan voters favour allowing medical marijuana in Mississippi.
This summer, FM3 Research surveyed 600 probable Mississippi voters about the initiatives on the upcoming ballot. Four out of five voters supported “doctors being able to recommend marijuana to patients with medical conditions and serious illnesses.” This extended across political parties, with 76 per cent of Republicans, 82 per cent of Independents and 89 per cent of Democrats favouring the idea.
The data demonstrates that a diverse base supports the idea of medical cannabis in general. When it comes to voting on what’s actually on the ballot, things get more complicated.
A proposal from the Mississippians for Compassionate Care qualified for the ballot in January, after the medical cannabis advocacy group submitted more than 214,000 signatures. The measure is called Initiative 65 and would allow patients to possess 2.5 ounces of cannabis per 14-day period.
Two months later, the Mississippi House of Representatives approved a new legalization proposal that will appear on the November ballots. It’s called Alternative 65A and offers few details about the eventual medical cannabis program. The potential bill would, however, ban smokable medical cannabis and require that products be “suitable pharmaceutical quality,” a phrase that lawmakers didn’t explain.
Cannabis advocates said at the time that Alternative 65A was an attempt to kill medical cannabis in Mississippi. The FM3 poll shows otherwise.
Three-quarters of respondent voters noted they would vote yes on either measure, but strongly preferred Initiative 65.
“A majority (52 per cent) support Initiative 65, while fewer than one-quarter (23 per cent) say they prefer Alternative 65A,” notes the FM3 Research memo.
The pollster added that Initiative 65 remains durable despite major oppositional voices.
This week, former Governor Phil Bryant wrote an op-ed advising Mississippi to vote “no” on the measure. The Mississippi State Board of Health additionally passed a resolution against Initiative 65 earlier this year.
The FreshToast.com, a U.S. lifestyle site that contributes lifestyle content and, with their partnership with 600,000 physicians via Skipta, medical marijuana information to The GrowthOp.
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Written by Angela Stelmakowich.
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