Oklahoma has had a difficult time contemplating recreational marijuana
It is increasingly common to see residents having the final say when it comes to major moves in their states. Marijuana legalization has become one of these priority issues. Oklahoma has been behind the market for quite a few years and could now bring the decisive move after giving its residents the opportunity through its next major election in March. Adult-use marijuana could soon become a part of this state as well.
With Maryland and Missouri recently passing the market through the midterm ballot, a total of 21 states have now adopted recreational marijuana. The list could have grown even longer if voters in Arkansas, North Dakota, and South Dakota had given the go-ahead. However, based on their conservative history, much like Oklahoma’s, all three states said no to these very similar ballot measures.
“The low-hanging fruit for legalization has been picked, and going forward, the battles could be a bit tougher,” said Chris Walsh, CEO of MJBiz, an annual cannabis business conference, which was held last week in Las Vegas. “We are talking about (tougher battles) in deep red states … and there is going to be more organized opposition.”
It appears that state Question 820 has several major obstacles, including Oklahoma’s own Republican governor. Last month, Gov. Kevin Stitt commented that there should not be a chessboard of the jurisdiction in all states, knowing that cannabis is still illegal at the federal level. He clarified his position by saying he would oppose the ballot question scheduled for March 7.
Still, voters in the Sooner State have already given their thumbs up to a robust medical marijuana program, resulting in one of the highest usage rates in the country. With that in mind, they may want to provide similar support for recreational use. That remains to be seen in the first quarter of next year.