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Ohio Marijuana Legalization Initiative Is Experiencing Low Signature Validity Rate, May Not Qualify For Ballot

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ohio signThe ResponsibleOhio marijuana legalization campaign turned in a total of 695,273 signatures earlier this year in an attempt to get their initiative on the 2015 ballot. That’s more than twice as many as the 305,591 valid signatures required. That means that the signature gathering effort needs to have a 43.95+ signature validity rate to hit their goal. In some areas that goal is being exceeded. However, in other areas, the signature validity rate is falling short. Per USA Today:

Ohio’s secretary of state is expected to announce as early as Monday whether ResponsibleOhio gathered enough valid signatures of registered Ohio voters to get the measure before voters in 2015. ResponsibleOhio needs 305,591 signatures to qualify. On June 30, the group turned in 695,273 signatures with the goal of ensuring it would have the right number, 50%, to qualify.

In four southwest Ohio counties, final counts show the petition campaign had a majority of valid signatures only in Warren County, at 53%. Hamilton County had a 33.74% validity rate. Butler and Clermont counties came in at 41%.

If the Ohio campaign falls short of the signature requirement, they will still have one last chance to gather the remaining signatures. Ohio allows campaigns one 10 day window to gather signatures after the determination is made that more signatures are required. I am fairly certain that between the high amount of initial signatures turned in, the additional ten day window, and the enormous amount of resources at the disposal of the campaign, that the initiative will make the ballot. But stranger things have happened in politics. Will Ohio voters approve it? That is completely uncertain at this time. If it does make the ballot it will be joined by another measure that would prevent the initiative, and others that create for-profit-monopolies, from being allowed in Ohio.

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50 Comments

  1. PhDScientist on

    The white house comment line is (202) 456-1111.
    They’re open from 9-5 east coast time

  2. It’s not a business deal. It’s a scam to get the voters to give them the entire growing market in the state while preventing others for entering and competing in the market. That was the entire reason they did not include homegrows in their initial proposal because they sat there thinking with greed that the only way the public would get legal cannabis was through the retail stores that are only allowed to sell product grown by their 10. That is why the public backlashed and RO had NO CHOICE but to cave and put a homegrow option in there.

    But to my original point, RO isn’t acting like Robin Hood in this scenario. They are money hungry greedy bastards and they are not doing this in the name of legalization because its the right and moral thing to do. They are doing it because of PROFIT. Had they approached this with a true sense of fairness to all and not just not fairness to them and their 10 selected growers, perhaps they would get all of the justified criticism they are getting.

  3. You say, “that would have been true had they just pushed for legalized homegrows or allowing an open market to supply the retail stores.”
    To which I ask, what investor ever, anywhere, is going to put up potentially $340 million – or even one million – so that SOMEBODY ELSE can make a profit?
    This is a business deal – nothing more, nothing less.
    You can certainly reject the deal if it offends your idealistic sensibilities, but it’s important to realize that your conscience may keep you from getting what you actually want, which is legalization.
    So, yes, I am saying the ends justify the means, and anyone who is even slightly pragmatic will realize the truth of that.

  4. Chris Humphrey on

    I’m one for the vote for RO. They don’t want a monopoly. It’s starts with 10 companies. If the demand isn’t satisfied that number will increase. I’m liberal capitalist. I don’t have the money to invest in cannabis at this time. If I did there are other areas that I could make money within cannabis ecosystem. I don’t and would like to be able to purchase/grow good cannabis that’s never available.

    My argument for legalization is that people already use it. Yes SOME people are setting on the sidelines that haven’t used it, but most know what it does and like it. We buy it illegally and with no idea what we are getting. Millionaires and politicians use it. It gives everyone a way to purchase it or grow it without a fuss. The government knows this is good for the people but don’t want to lose the control they feel they have..

  5. the commission has the authority to decide if 10 grow sites is enough or if ohio needs more or less… if they decide to increase the # of growers the licences will be open to anyone if you got the $$$ … the idea that the 10 grow groups got something for free is just silly… they each put in 2 million each to get 1 of the 1st 10 licences…. i doubt the commission will charge anything close to a million for the next set of licences …

    its obvious that most who replied also never read amendment but feel content to spread opinion about something you dont know anything about… facts first opinions second but only if your educated in the topic at hand…

    any1 willing to wait next year or whenever something better shows up is missing the pount… we can save people asap with RO… next year we still might not get medical cannabis… how many will die be4 the right one comes around … i will not stand idle while people suffer and die… will you?

  6. I don’t understand the assumption that people against RO are prohibs or illegal growers protecting their turf. Or the opposite assumption that people in favor of RO are shills for RO. Why can’t the debate be on the issues without making assumptions about people’s motives, and without the gratuitous insults?

  7. It’s too late for this year. Maybe RO would consider something like that if they lose this year. But RO is apparently only doing this for the money and a 2 years monopoly probably isn’t enough to interest them in spending the kind of money another campaign would take.

  8. OTEP, an alternative to RO has 3 1/2 months left before people have to vote on RO. If they can’t show good progress towards getting on the ballot in 2016 by then, why think they’ll do any better next year? The contrast between the MILegalize group trying to legalize in Michigan in 2016 and OTEP seems pretty large. The people in Michigan seem to be far more connected and active.

    And 2018 is problematic because turnout of younger people is so much less in ‘off-year’ elections.
    You could easily be looking at 2020 before another chance to vote on legalizing weed and ensuring that medicinal marijuana patients in Ohio have a legal place to go to buy quality controlled weed That’s 4 years of suffering and death that will be avoided if RO passes. That’s one big reason to vote for this stinking cartel right there.

  9. Enabling people to access MEDICINAL marijuana is a lot more than a tad better than the current situation. They need medicine now, they can’t wait for a better deal that has no timetable for when it will arrive. And the limited right to grow in RO isn’t that bad, 4 mature plants + small plants + 8 ounces of stash. Washington State doesn’t even allow any right to grow your own

    Vote for the stinking cartel. It’s important. (To paraphrase a Louisiana campaign slogan from the 90’s when the choice in a runoff for governor was between.a convicted embezzler and the racist David Duke.

  10. Why can’t we figure this out?? So why is it so difficult to introduce a compromise? Let the 10 have
    their little monopoly, but set a time limit on it…say 2 years?? After
    that cultivation licenses open up to any Ohio resident. Then after
    another 5 years passes licenses open to anyone, even non-Ohio residents
    from other states..

  11. RO and their idea of allowing only select and unknown companies to grow seems pretty shady to me. I don’t think I would be that eager to jump on the bandwagon and vote for this particular idea. Legalization will happen eventually regardless, I believe better options will come soon. Good things come to those who wait :)

  12. And this is the problem with your kind. You automatic dismiss and make assumptions just because someone will not bow down and kiss your ass because we don’t support the same initiative you do. You do realize that every single other has a right to vote their conscious, right? And just because we do not support this initiative because of the issues that have been debated ad nauseous does not mean we don’t support the cause.

    You may not like it but it is how democracy actually works. And the same people you demean and put down are the same people you are trying to convince to vote for your preference. Sorry, Charlie, that shit don’t work. It’s no different than every time someone posts shit about Republicans and everyone piles on. They aren’t ever going to come to your side when you make ridiculous assumptions.

    I support legalization nationwide but for the things that are important to me. I called out RO when they launched and said any bill without homegrow would not fly in Ohio and what happened? The public backlash was so crazy they had to change it. But sorry, they are trying to buy the market by limiting it to their 10 grows and are trying to do it using a Constitutional amendment. They aren’t fucking Robin Hood and doing this out of the good of their heart. Nope, that would have been true had they just pushed for legalized homegrows or allowing an open market to supply the retail stores.

    I support legalization but I don’t support RO and I certainly don’t support you.

  13. It happens with every single voter initiative. It’s not exclusive to this measure. You’re delusional if you think it happens in other initiatives but not this one. And I did notify the election boards in the past of misconduct and those I reported were friends of mine. Having character doesn’t mean you only have when it benefits you.

  14. “I know plenty of signature gatherers that fill out fake forms or get people to fill out forms even when they know the persons signature will not count.”
    I think the Board of Elections might want a list of names.
    Will you provide it, or will you abet those criminals?

  15. “And I don’t give a fuck who finances the next effort” Then you don’t care if legalization ever come to Ohio.
    Nice. Thanks for your support.

  16. Sorry, but you don’t get decide what you find acceptable for the entire state and its citizens. That is why we have elections so that each voter can be represented based on the actual merits of the proposed measure.

    Now think about this for a moment. If RO is having such a hard time acquiring the number of signatures needed, what are you going to do if the voters come out in November and vote against it? And even if those greater than 50% of signatures which did not validate voted, that number is still lower than the average turn out in Ohio for elections. It’s not quite the slam dunk it is presented as.

    You refer to the Feds changing its schedule status but I wouldn’t hold my breath and sorry, I am not voting for a shit initiative with the hopes that one day the Feds will change the schedule so I can buy across state lines.

  17. Try again, sunshine. You received no email from me and I find it comical that you are trying to play it that way. And this “boy” would give your old ass a fucking heart attack. And be honest, you know why you want kids in your basement and it’s not to raise them, PedoBear.

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