OKLAHOMA CITY - A group in support of an upcoming state question over medical marijuana is refuting claims in a new ad.
Recently, the group, State Question 788 Is Not Medical, released a 30-second television ad which asks voters, "Do we really want our college freshmen growing up to 12 pounds of weed every year in their dorm room?" The group's campaign consultant Pat McFerron said it's an example of why the state question is poorly written.
On Wednesday, McFerron and a number of business, faith, and medical leaders spoke with members of the press on why they are urging the public to vote on State Question 788. Each member reiterated they are not against medical marijuana as a whole, but they are opposed to the state question because it is poorly written and too vague.
"If you read through 788, it expressly says that no landlord can keep a license holder from starting a grow room -- from exercising the rights it gives them and an 18-year-old renting a college dorm room, if they have that license, they have the right to grow them, up to 12 plants," McFerron told News 4.
However, supporters of State Question 788 told us the question posed in the ad is nothing more than a scare tactic. Jed Green, state director for the "Yes On 788" campaign, said the claim of being able to grow up to 12 pounds of marijuana has no basis in reality.
"To get those levels of yields that are being cited, you’ve got to have a serious operation and that type of operation between that, the air quality controls that need to be in place, the temperatures that need to be in place," Green said. "Dorm rooms simply just don’t have that capacity."
He said even if dorm rooms were capable of doing so, universities could set policies in place arguing the act of growing medical marijuana could pose a fire hazard. He admits, however, it could still pose a legal battle.
"One legal challenge would be a patient’s rights and patients’ issue and they would possibly have a legitimate claim there," he said. "It would be possible for a patient to challenge, and on the grounds of medical access, they would have a claim."
McFerron said while many opponents are not against medicinal marijuana as a whole, the language behind State Question 788 itself leaves too much room for unintended consequences.
"Having a license to use it for two years without a doctor’s follow-up? That doesn’t look like medicine. That looks like recreation. Being able to have a licensed signed by someone that hasn’t gone to medical school? That looks like recreation," he said. "If that’s not their intent, that’s fine. Let’s do something the right way and pass medical marijuana that really helps people."
On Monday, Governor Mary Fallin stated she does intend to call for a special session if State Question 788 were to pass. Lawmakers would be tasked with addressing the practical implementation of the proposal.
Voters will decide on State Question 788 on Tuesday, June 26.