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Mississippi Governor Makes Final Plea in Opposition to Medical Marijuana

November 2, 2020

Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves made a final plea against medical marijuana on Twitter ahead of election day on November 3rd, where voters in the state will be asked to approve Initiative 65 that would legalize medical marijuana in the state. “Most non-stoners say we should be careful and deliberate,” the tweet stated, “Initiative 65 is the opposite…. Voting against both [Initiative 65 and Alternative 65A].” 

Reeves also claimed that there would be “pot shops everywhere” and “no local authority.” Under Initiative 65’s text, municipalities would be permitted to enact local zoning ordinances on medical cannabis businesses. 

Polls Indicate Gov. Reeves Efforts Against Mississippi Medical Marijuana May Prove to be Fruitless 

In September, Reeves signed legislation that allowed individuals in Mississippi to obtain medical marijuana-derived medications approved by the FDA. While he reiterated that he stands “against efforts to make marijuana mainstream,” polling in the state has indicated that medical marijuana has a strong chance of passage.

According to the poll, the legalization of Mississippi medical marijuana has bipartisan support, with 89% of Democrats, 76% of republicans, and 82% of independents saying they were in favor of “allowing patients with medical conditions and serious illness to possess and consume marijuana if their doctors recommend it.”

Governor’s Office Not the Only Public Opposer

The mayor of the city of Madison, Mississippi, asked the state’s Supreme Court to invalidate cannabis measures with a claim that they were unlawfully placed before voters. Additionally, the Mississippi State Medical Association and American Medical Association put a sample ballot into circulation that instructed voters on how to reject Initiative 65. President Donald J. Trump also sent advocates a cease and desist letter after using quotes from the president that supported medical cannabis. 

Although Mississippians for Compassionate Care, the activist-led group pushing for legalization, has faced opposition from multiple angles, it would appear that they have done enough to garner public support heading into the November 3rd vote. 

Contributed by Jack Berning