JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — After reading through the different medical marijuana questions set for the November ballot, the former-House budget chair who started the legislative legalization push is changing his “no” on all three questions to a “yes” on Amendment 2.
“I have read the Marijuana proposals. I was incorrect about Amendment 2. It is carefully written. I will vote for it,” former-Rep. Chris Kelly wrote on Twitter.
The change of opinion comes roughly two weeks afters stating he would “vote NO on all of them because of the way they are written.”
There are currently three measures on the November ballot, all placed there through initiative petition, that are asking Missourians to legalize medical marijuana. All three proposals are vastly different: two are Constitutional amendments, one is a statutory change; tax rates range from 2 percent to 15 percent; cost of administration runs between $500,000 to $10 million; and revenue generation estimates vary from $10 million to $66 million.
The first person to sponsor legalization in the Missouri General Assemble to legalize marijuana, Kelly is in favor of the idea but said he was worried about putting the language in the constitution.
After reading the different proposals, Kelly said he believes that Amendment 2, which was put forth by New Approach Missouri, is the best option.
“I generally don’t like constitutional amendments written by and put on the ballot by initiative petition because they are almost alway badly written,” said Kelly. “I looked at this one and it seems to cover most of the basics. Given that one of the three of them are going to become law, I think this is the best written of the three.”
The other constitutional amendment was put forth by Springfield lawyer and doctor Brad Bradshaw and will appear as Amendment 3 on the November ballot. The statutory change put forth by Missourians for Patient Care will appear as Proposition C on the general election ballot.
When compared to the statutory change, Kelly said the he felt Amendment 2 “seems to cover the basis a little better.”
Amendment 2 is supported by the New Approach campaign.
Alisha Shurr is a reporter for the Missouri Times and Missouri Times Magazine. She joined the Missouri Times in January 2018 after working as a copy editor for her hometown newspaper in Southern Oregon. Alisha is a graduate of Kansas State University. Contact Alisha at email@example.com.