Oklahoma Will Vote on Medical Marijuana in June

FILE - In this Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017 file photo, Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin speaks following a news conference in Oklahoma City. Fallin has issued an order to convene a special legislative session, asking lawmakers to return to the Oklahoma Capitol on Monday to address a $110 million hole in the state budget. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki, File)

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin announced yesterday that the state’s voters will finally get the chance to decide whether to approve or reject the legalization of medical cannabis. Fallin set the vote for June 26, a primary election. She had the option to move it to the Nov. 6 general election, but chose to go with the earlier date.

If approved, State Question 788 would permit patients 18 years and older to legally possess up to 3 ounces of cannabis.

“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,” Fallin said on Thursday. “I’m fulfilling my duty as governor to decide when that election will occur this year.”

If approved by voters, State Question 788 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 flower, six mature plants and six seedlings. Those limits could be increased by individual counties or cities.

Supporters of an initiative petition asking voters to legalize medical marijuana gathered enough signatures in 2016 to schedule a statewide referendum on the measure, but the initiative got tied up in the courts over the state attorney general’s ballot title language. 

As NORML’s Paul Armentano reported earlier today, the state’s supreme court ruled 7 to 1 that the attorney general’s rewording of the ballot measure was misleading, and ordered that the measure’s initial language be restored.

Currently, the cultivation or distribution of cannabis is classified as a felony offense punishable by up to life in prison in Oklahoma.