Oklahomans will vote on the issue on June 26 during the primary election. Republican Mary Fallin set the date via an executive proclamation, issued yesterday.
State Question 788 permits physicians to recommend cannabis therapy to patients at their discretion. Patients possessing a state-issued medical license are permitted to engage in cannabis possession or cultivation, or they purchase marijuana products from a licensed dispensary.
Initiative proponents gathered sufficient signatures to place the issue before voters in 2016. However, the vote was postponed because of litigation over contested ballot title language. In a 7 to 1 ruling in April, justices rejected the state attorney general’s rewording of the initiative’s ballot title, which proponents had argued was purposely misleading, and ordered that the measure’s initial language be restored.
Under Oklahoma law, the cultivation or distribution of cannabis is classified as a felony offense punishable by up to life in prison.
Proponents of separate statewide medical cannabis initiatives are gathering signatures in Missouri and Utah. Proponents of a medical marijuana initiative in South Dakota have turned in their signatures and are awaiting a review by the Secretary of State’s office. In November, proponents of a voter initiative effort to legalize and regulate the personal use and retail sale of cannabis in Michigan turned in more than 360,000 signatures in an effort to qualify the measure for the November 2018 ballot.