After the Nebraska Supreme Court struck down the group’s medical cannabis legalization measure before the 2020 election, Nebraskans for Medical Marijuana has carefully crafted two new medical cannabis initiatives that it hopes to qualify for the state’s 2022 ballot.
The group filed language for the two initiatives Sept. 8, the Lincoln Journal-Star reported, and it expects to start circulating both petitions later this month. Nebraskans for Medical Marijuana must gather 250,000 signatures by July 7, 2022, to qualify both measures for next year’s ballot.
Opponents of the group’s 2020 ballot measure argued that it included more than one question, thus violating the single-subject rule outlined in the Nebraska Constitution. After the Supreme Court overturned the initiative, Nebraskans for Medical Marijuana filed a single-sentence constitutional initiative for the 2022 ballot before again retooling its efforts and splitting the issue into two complementary initiatives.
The first would require the Nebraska Legislature to enact laws to protect doctors who recommend cannabis to their patients, as well as the patients who possess and use medical cannabis, from criminal penalty, the Lincoln Journal-Star reported.
The second initiative would require the Legislature to pass legislation to establish a regulatory framework that protects businesses that produce and sell medical cannabis, according to the news outlet.
State Sens. Anna Wishart and Adam Morfield are sponsoring the petition drive, the Lincoln Journal-Star reported.
“If anything, people are more fired up because of the court case last year,” Jared Moffat, who has worked on the Nebraskans for Medical Marijuana campaign through his role as a campaigns coordinator for the Marijuana Policy Project, told Cannabis Business Times and Cannabis Dispensary last month. “We don’t want to be overconfident. It’s going to be a lot of work for sure, but I think that given the level of support and how many volunteers and people are interested in helping, we’re going to be in great shape to get it done."