It’s “officially official” — United for Care sent out another celebratory email money pitch, this time announcing they have enough validated petition signatures for the medical marijuana amendment to make it to the November ballot.
With 710,508 valid petitions as of Friday, the group surpassed the 683,149 threshold — as well as providing those petitions from the required number of congressional districts — to put finally the issue of legalizing pot as treatment for certain illnesses in front of the electorate.
So what is next?
The language of the measure still has to pass muster with the Florida Supreme Court, with a decision that could come down any time before April 1.
That could be a problem, since an unfavorable ruling — something argued for by Attorney General Pam Bondi and Republicans in Tallahassee — could stop the initiative before it even goes before the people.
Now, the more pressing issue for United for Care is to educate a minimum of 60 percent of Florida voters why legalizing medical marijuana is in their best interests. Polls seem to be in their favor, with the most recent study showing 65 percent of voters in the state support the idea.
Democratic fundraiser Barbara Steifel is offering to match any donation made between now and 11:59 pm, January 31.
According to Campaign Manager Ben Pollara, the next phase of the campaign needs a minimum of $20,000 to continue, especially when there are “thousands and thousands of seriously ill Floridians who are desperate for relief.”
Who can argue with that?