Florida hopes to go green by 2022
A green wave is sweeping the nation, and Floridians hope to be next in the long line of states to fully legalize recreational marijuana. Soon you may see recreational marijuana dispensaries thorughout Florida. As popularity grows to end the decades-long prohibition, and measures across the country continue to pass, one major state senator in Florida believes that the time is now. State Senator Jeff Brandes filed a bill to short circuit two referendums that would legalize marijuana in the state by 2022. More legislation is expected to be announced that would seek to erase nonviolent marijuana convictions in the state.
Brandes hopes to achieve legalization through means of the legislature, but recognizes that if they continue to remain inactive on the matter, the people of the state will choose to legalize via constitutional amendment as a ballot measure. Current polls show that two out of three voters support legalization. Further, 15 states across the country have passed marijuana legalization, and the House of Representatives voted on a bill that would reschedule marijuana and legalize the substance for adult-use.
Brandes hopes to sit down with the opposition and explain the necessity of legalization in the state. However, marijuana legalization through means of legislative action has only been successful on two occasions: Vermont and in Illinois. Each of the other 13 other states that have fully legalized recreational marijuana have done so by referendum.
Another obstacle legalization faces in the state is the opposition by Governor Ron DeSantis. DeSantis was elected governor of the state in 2019, and will continue to hold the seat until 2023. As a first time governor, he will be eligible for reelection and will likely seek it if all remains constant. He has vocally disproved of legalization in the past, but that hasn’t stopped the movement to legalize from growing.
While marijuana legalization is on the table, it will be some time until Floridians can sit back on a beach and enjoy the effects of cannabis. Until then, Florida will remain one of the 35 states still suffering from prohibition.