Michigan’s leading marijuana legalization campaign to reorganize, seeks new partners and public input around state as part of relaunch of petition drive for ballot access
September 22, 2016 LANSING, MICHIGAN- The campaign for sensible cannabis law reform continues!
MILegalize expects justice from the federal courts whether by a separate suit filed on behalf of signers and circulators in the Eastern Federal District Court, or by way of the appeal to the Supreme Court of The United States. All state courts in which the case was filed dismissed the MILegalize suit without addressing the core arguments of the legal challenge, and without a hearing.
In the meantime, the MILegalize organization will go forward with a restructuring of the ballot group and preparation for another petition drive. “We expect resolution from the courts, but that does not mean that we will be standing still as that process continues,” said Tom Lavigne, an MILegalize board member and attorney with the Detroit based law firm Cannabis Counsel.
“The MILegalize movement remains united and focused on planning over the next few months,” said the group’s Chairman, attorney Jeffrey Hank. “The existing board is in deliberations about reorganization to run an improved campaign and is planning to create an Advisory Committee, which would include people interested in leadership or management positions within the campaign.”
The day following the Michigan Supreme Court’s dismissal of the 2016 MILegalize legal challenge, a package of bills outlining a statewide distribution system for medical marijuana was passed by the Senate, after being held captive in the Senate Judiciary Committee for months. The bills were brought to the floor directly by Senate majority leader Arlan Meekhof, bypassing the typical process of first being approved by a committee. That proposal has been widely viewed as harmful to the citizen participants while giving enormous advantages to business interests and not solving the larger problems of cannabis prohibition.
“In less than 48 hours, we have witnessed the stealing of an election and the hijacking of the emerging cannabis industry in Michigan,” said MILegalize board member Jamie Lowell.
Other board members are ready and motivated to move forward as well.
“We will continue to fight for the people of Michigan and are committed to ensuring the voters are finally heard. We won’t quit until every adult has the legal right to freely use cannabis for medicine or personal reasons without harassment and fear of arrest,” declared Debra Young, MILegalize board member.
The re-forming of the group will include incorporating plans to offer opportunities for additional involvement from the public including input on language and structure. The group plans to hold informational “Town Hall” style meetings in the upcoming months in several locations around the state. “The lessons learned and what we’ve accomplished along with the current need for reform have created the perfect storm for MILegalize to mobilize and run another petition drive with efficiencies and a broader scope that did not exist even a year ago,” said Assistant Campaign Manager Nick Zettell.
“The MILegalize organization has grown into a legitimate political force,” said Hank, from the campaign’s offices in downtown Lansing. “Although litigation in the federal courts continues, the outpouring of support and desire to complete the mission is so profound that we really have no choice but to continue this effort and prepare for another petition drive.”
Citizens with additional questions and who would like to participate can inquire at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Media Contact: Jeffrey Hank 855-426-5529
Paid for and Authorized by MILegalize, PO Box 6675, East Lansing, MI 48826