Medical Marijuana Supporters In Arkansas Submit Petition Signatures
Joe | Jul 06, 2012 | Comments 0
Supporters of a measure in Arkansas to legalize medical marijuana submitted their signatures on Thursday. They are attempting to get the measure on the statewide ballot this November, and the initial deadline to turn in signatures is today.
Arkansans for Compassionate Care, the group backing the proposed marijuana act, submitted 11,000 pages of petitions that they say have 67,885 signatures. Initiated acts need at least 62,507 signatures from registered voters to appear on the ballot.
If Arkansans for Compassionate Care falls short after the verification process, it’ll have 30 more days to gather additional signatures. Groups that fall short during the initial rough count won’t have additional time to gather signatures.
Ryan Denham, the campaign’s director, said supporters were planning on the likelihood that some of their signatures will be thrown out during the verification process.
“Ultimately, we’d definitely like to get another 40,000 to 50,000 signatures,” Denham said.
No “bible belt” states have passed medical marijuana patient protections yet, so if it happens in Arkansas this year it could be a precedent for bringing relief to patients throughout the south.
A generally conservative state, Arkansas is home to the mega-corporation that is Walmart. In Presidential races the state did side with its former Governor Bill Clinton twice, but the last three elections has seen it go to the GOP, with a higher percentage each time. It’s considered a safe state for GOP candidate Mitt Romney this year.
Those voting for Romney are less likely to vote for medical cannabis, so the signatures and votes will have to come from elsewhere.