Fla. group sues over ballots missing marijuana initiative

A Florida lawyer is suing after a Miami-area woman’s ballot was missing one of the election’s highly debated issues, a shot to legalize medical pot.

Karen Goldstein received an absentee ballot earlier this month in Broward County, but the spot for the state’s Amendment 2 was mysteriously blank.

The measure is asking residents for an up or down vote on legalizing weed for medical use, part of a raft of cannabis-centered questioned posed to residents across the country next month.

More than 60% of voters need to approve the amendment for it to pass, and a lawyer has filed suit against a Broward County official saying that ballots with it could cause “irreparable harm” and deny residents their constitutional rights.

“The end result of this error is catastrophic and cataclysmic,” Norm Kent, a lawyer for marijuana reform group NORML, wrote in a filing obtained by the Miami Herald.

Kent, who is trying to get an emergency court hearing on Monday, said it was not known if only a handful or thousands of ballots were affected, though he told the paper that he had received six calls about the matter.

A pro-marijuana campaign manager said that elections officials told him the ballots without the question were likely test ballots.

Amendment 2 comes after a similar measure was narrowly voted down by Floridians in 2014, with 58% supporting it.

A poll from the Florida Chamber of Commerce taken late last month shows 73% approval of the new effort.

Florida, where ballot problems became a national issue in the 2000 recount, starts early voting on Monday.

Early voting is already underway in some states including other presidential battlegrounds such as North Carolina.

Source: New York Daily News