Secretary of State Approves Recreational Marijuana Measure for the Ballot

Dave Owen, middle, chairman of the North Dakota Marijuana Legalization Initiative, celebrtaes a high-five with volunteer Becky-Muhs-Rettig inside the Secretary of State's office at the state Capitol on Monday in Bismarck. More than a dozen people volunteers filed into the room to submit the more than 18,000 petitioned signatures to Jaeger's office. The measure would legalize the growing, possessing, distribution and use of marijuana for people over 21-years-old. If the measure signatures are verified, it will be placed on the November ballot. 7-9-2018

Today Secretary of State Al Jaeger’s office approved a third ballot measure for North Dakotans to vote on in November.

The organizers behind a measure to legalize recreational marijuana submitted 15,777 signatures. Of those 738 were disqualified for various reasons, leaving the measure with a signature total 1,587 more than the law requires.

Here’s the breakdown (click for a larger view):

All ballot measures see a certain number of signatures disqualified. Particularly measure campaigns that rely on volunteers. The marijuana folks did a pretty good job, considering.

If approved this measure would decriminalize marijuana for recreational use and expunge the records of people convicted of marijuana-related offenses which would have been legal under this measure.

The measure organizers are quick to caution that their measure wouldn’t let anyone off of punishment for breaking the law, though some legal analysts see some deep flaws in how the measure is worded.

Previously the Secretary of State’s office approved measures to create an ethics commission and to explicitly ban non-citizen voting. There is currently just one measure still under review, one which would create a special classification of license plate for first responders.

Here’s the full release:

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and the host of the Rob (Re)Port on Fargo-based WDAY AM970 from noon-2pm weekdays.

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