South Dakota cannabis proponents to try for legalization again in 2023

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The third time could be the charm for South Dakota cannabis legislation

South Dakota was one of the states whose efforts to legalize recreational marijuana failed to bear fruit during the last midterm elections. Many stakeholders were confident that voters would support the measure, but more votes were needed. Still, activists seem unwilling to give up and believe the third time is the charm. They have now taken the first step to get the proposal back on the ballot for the third time.

With a new year about to begin, marijuana advocates are not looking to waste any time and have already started to move so that future elections will once again have the legalization of marijuana as one of the most relevant proposals. Should it go before voters and receive sufficient approval this time around, the measure would allow current medical marijuana dispensaries to obtain an extra license to also sell recreational products to people over the age of 21.

As many will recall, midterm elections were held last month in many states across the country. Mount Rushmore State was among five states that could choose whether or not to welcome this market. At the end of the day, the results only indicated that Maryland and Missouri received enough support for recreational marijuana to become a reality.

Proponents tried to explain the outcome by placing much of the blame on low turnout during a midterm election and insufficient funding. It made little sense to many that the measure did not find the desired success considering that voters approved an earlier 2020 legalization proposal.

However, that was then overturned by the state Supreme Court amid a legal challenge led by the governor. Now, with an eye on 2024, South Dakotans for Better Marijuana Laws (SDBML) may be exploring funding options in order to legalize this market once and for all.

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